Background Tricks

Five ways to better portrait backdrops
By Wes Pitts
"Watch your background!" is one of the first lessons to learn as a photographer, and it's an essential tip for portraiture. Clean and simple is generally best; cluttered backgrounds distract from your subject. That doesn't mean your portrait backgrounds need to be stark and uninteresting. With enough lens blur—achieved in-camera…

A Parent’s Perspective

Capture authentic family portraits by finding the beauty in easily missed moments
Text & Photography By Tracey Clark
I began my career as a portrait photographer before my career as a parent, but even then, children were always my favorite subject. To me, everything about children is poetic, and using my camera to frame each lilting and lyrical detail is what ignited my interest and fueled my passion…

Indoor Light Portraits

Capturing everyday life with beautiful light in the home
Text & Photography By Me Ra Koh
Whether you're a beginner or an aspiring pro, do you ever have this sinking feeling that all your photos are starting to look the same? You've taken your clients to the same park two dozen times. You've set your families up in the same poses again and again. The creativity…

Child’s Play

How to plan for and engage kids in lively portrait sessions
Text & Photography By Shannon Sewell
Kids can be your cutest, most animated, uninhibited and fun subjects to photograph. They can also be the most distracted, emotionally charged, quick-moving and difficult. So, how do you plan for the latter while creating the former? Successful children's photography relies heavily on being able to connect with the child…

Lighting For Skin Tones

How to make skin look great with subtle changes to the position and quality of the light source—whether that’s a strobe or sunlight or anything in between
By William Sawalich
There's one thing all portrait subjects share in common: They want to look good. Young and old, men and women alike, everybody hates to see their wrinkles and blemishes on display. So learn how to light to minimize flaws and produce smooth, flattering skin tones. IT ALL STARTS IN THE…

Travel Portraits

Breaking the ice and getting the shot
Text And Photography By Tom Bol
When I first started to shoot travel portraits, I was paralyzed at the thought of approaching complete strangers and taking their picture. I was convinced they'd start hurtling expletives my way the second I raised my camera. Better to hide in the bushes with a long lens and "paparazzi" the…
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