Photography Studio and Lighting Forum

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  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Chelsea, AL USA

    First attempt at portraits

    I've done all sports photography (four years) up until a few weeks ago. I took my kids to a local park to try some portrait shots. I think their smiles look a little forced because they were freezing their butts off. I'm looking for any feedback I can get (composition, lighting etc).
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails First attempt at portraits-img_4641w.jpg   First attempt at portraits-img_4655w.jpg  
    Canon EOS 30D
    Canon 70-200mm f4.0 L
    Sigma 70-200mm f2.8 DG HSM

  2. #2
    don't tase me, bro! Asylum Steve's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Middle Florida

    Not bad at all...

    Quote Originally Posted by JADPhoto
    I took my kids to a local park to try some portrait shots...
    What you're attempting here can be daunting even for shooters experienced at this. Imagine making your living photographing other people's families and kids. Subjects you don't even know!

    Yeah, I get the cold sweats late at night thinking about that kind of stuff...

    Your shots look pretty good, considering every subject you add makes it exponetially harder to nail a great photo.

    You should try to stay away from the natural tendency to center your subjects. A little bit is good, but it's a bit too much here. In the second shot, that center post is way too prominent.

    Also, consider having your bg recede at more of an angle, instead of being flat as you have it. Gives more depth to the shot. With that in mind, throwing the bg slightly or even greatly out of focus will bring the viewer's eye to your subjects, where you want it.

    Now, assuming these are captive subjects, I'm sure you'll have the chance to photograph them again. And again...

    Like maybe when it warms up a bit?...
    "Riding along on a carousel...tryin' to catch up to you..."

    Studio & Lighting - Photography As Art Forum Moderator

    Running the Photo Asylum, Asylum Steve's blogged brain pipes...

  3. #3
    Princess of the OT adina's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    rockin' it in the D

    Re: First attempt at portraits

    Triangles are good (head placement) but generally, in this type of situation, you want to line up mouth/nose to eyes, it keeps the grouping a little tighter, and keeps your attention on the faces.

    Also, with clothing, I try to get the same tones, notice on the b&w how the light shirt is way lighter than the other two? If it was a darker tone, it would blend a bit better and not pull your attention. A slight vignette may help as well.

    They all look relaxed, which is great.
    I sleep, but I don't rest.

  4. #4
    Senior Member retroactiv's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Frankfort, IN, USA

    Re: First attempt at portraits

    Something I see, is that you are giving your children way to much headroom in these shots, bring the camera down a smidgen. seems like in the top photo like there is a little bit of being drown out by the light bring the f stops up a bit, and I think you'll be happy. Over all I think that these are great photos, and I think with what I said you can fix it all in Photoshop.

    In fact this is what I did with my own children for Christmas presents (makes a cheap gift that grandmas die for), try doing something inside I used a white and black sheet as back drops and made black and white photos of my kids.
    Chris Johnson
    Nikon Samurai # 30
    Nikon D2Xs, Nikon D50, SB-800, AF Nikkor 80-200 D ED f2.8, AF Nikkor 50 D f1.8, AF Nikkor 18-55 G ED f5.6

  5. #5
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Denver, CO USA

    Re: First attempt at portraits

    The triangle pose was a good start. Forming groups into shapes will help build a base. What I always do is select an area that would look great without subject in it and then start posing for a great portrait. Look for repeating lines in the background will help draw your subject in. Don't be afraid to place your subject on the ground. Practice, practice, practice
    Andrew Osterberg
    Going Beyond Digital Photography

  6. #6
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2008

    Re: First attempt at portraits

    colorful pic is so good.

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