Posts tagged ‘tips’

April 5, 2011

All Made Up | Luminance photography – Wanganui

make up

I have found a useful post on make-up for photographs. It’s by New Zealand make-up artist Nikki Lovrich and is a good read for anyone who’d rather do their own than hire a pro.

You’ll find it here on Nikki’s blog – Make up for Photographs.

March 22, 2011

Raccoon eyes to model looks

I’m writing this post for those of you who use automatic cameras – either the sort that’s small enough to fit into a pocket or an SLR/DSLR that you only ever use on auto. And, when I refer to the ‘subject’ of the photograph I’m assuming that you’re photographing a person ;p.
There are a couple of problems that come to mind when I think about taking photographs outdoors in full sun. Firstly, if your subject is in full sun, especially in the middle of the day, you’re likely to see harsh shadows on the face. With the light coming from overhead, shadows are thrown under the eyes and nose. These are generally quite unflattering and won’t give you the results you might like. You may also find your sbuject squinting in the harsh sunlight, closing up their eyes and scrunching up their nose. So, here are a couple of tricks you can use to counter these problems.

little boy in full sun

Little lad photographed in full midday sun. Just look at those shadows!

The first is to get your subject to move into the shade. Look closely at the shade, though. Is it dappled? If so it too might be leaving odd looking shadows on people’s faces. Look for nice, even shade. Trees or building overhangs can be quite obliging. Once you’ve maneuovered your subject into a good patch of shade, try taking your shot. Be aware that if you there is a lot of light visible within the camera frame, behind or around your subject, the camera may under expose the skin leaving the person looking a bit dark. This is because, even though your camera may be fairly sophisticated, if used on auto it doesn’t know exactly what in the frame you want properly exposed. So, the software will take a sort of average of all the light that it detects within the frame and expose for that rather than specifically for your subject’s skin. You can get around this problem by framing very closely, filling the viewer with your subject’s face, or you can try using the flash on your camera to fill in the darker portions. Try both and see which result you prefer the look of.

Boy in the shade

Here he is in the shade of a tree.

The second way to avoid the harsh shadows that full sunlight can produce is simply to find the sun, and turn your subject’s back to it. You may find again that the camera is exposing for a lot of background light. The solutions, again, are to crop in  closer, or try adding some flash. The beauty of turning your subject’s back to the light, though, is that the light will catch in their hair giving a beautiful glow that is very attractive.

Little lad backlit by the sun

Here's the little lad backlit by the sun.

Both of these options should eliminate the problem of squinting by ensuring that your subject isn’t trying to stare into the sun. There are other techniques used by professionals to produce good results when photographing outside, but I hope these will prove useful to you. Feel free to comment below or ask further questions and I’ll be happy to reply.

– All these photos were taken on a Canon Ixus 700 compact camera.

September 8, 2010

Preparing for your baby’s in-home portrait session

Baby SS at homeYou’ve found the trendiest photographer in town, had yourself on the waiting list and have just booked your appointment for a creative session for your baby. What do you do now?

Here is some advice on what your next steps for your baby’s in-home portrait session could be.

1. Talk to your photographer about what sort of portraits you would like (e.g. nude, indoor, outdoor) and which space in your house might be best to use.

2. Think about what you want to do with the finished product; for example, do you want a framed print to hang on the wall or albums for you, baby and the grandparents?

3. On the day, be sure to heat the chosen room to a temperature that baby will find comfortable if stripped down to just a nappy or onesie.

3. Choose a few outfits with plenty of colour but not too many dizzying patterns. Having a few options laid out when your photographer arrives will help you to keep your stress levels low.

4. Have a couple of your favourite baby toys and/or blankets handy. Perhaps you’d like to match them to your chosen outfits.

5. Keep a bib or dribble cloth handy to protect baby’s clothes.

6. If you’re planning to have some nude shots taken, be prepared with a towel to give baby some nappy-free time on first and/or keep baby’s nappy and clothes fastened loosely. This is helpful for avoiding red marks on baby’s skin.

7. If you expect to be in some of the frames be well-groomed. Not only will a manicure, hair-do and makeup all leave you looking fabulous in your portraits but they are also a well deserved treat for a mum such as yourself.

7. RELAX. If you’ve chosen a specialist baby photographer you can feel assured that he/she will know to expect the unexpected and will be practised at being patient. Do feel free to be yourself with your little one as baby will be more comfortable if you are comfortable.

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