Tips For Taking Stunning Portraits

Whether you are just getting into photography or are trying to improve your portraiture, taking photographs of people is not always easy. Unless you hire professional models, you need to know how to direct your subjects while simultaneously making them feel at ease. If you are interested in taking better portraits, look no further than this article for tips that will have people asking you to take their picture in no time.

Act Confident

As the photographer, you are in charge of the situation, and it is your duty to direct and guide your subject. Be confident and speak with authority when giving directions. Try a few different poses or ask your subject to stand in a way that makes them feel comfortable; try asking them to pose as if they are standing in line at the bank or the grocery store. This will assure a natural pose that does not look forced.

Be Conversational

Often the best smiles and facial expressions occur from genuine moments of human interaction between the photographer and the subject. While you are directing the subject through poses, ask the subject about his or her life and try to be as funny as possible without being too corny. You may capture a few shots where the subject is mid-sentence but you are also likely to capture a great smile or two.

Compliment Your Subject

Be sure to mention anything you like about your subjects' clothing, hair and/or make-up. Compliments will make your subjects feel at ease and more likely to open up to you. Keep the compliments going throughout the entire photo session. Tell them when they have a nice smile or when you capture a nice pose. You will begin to notice that the photographs at the beginning of the session are stiffer than those at the end after the subject is feeling confident and has warmed up to you.

Help Your Subjects Prepare

Give your subjects some homework to do if this a planned photo session rather than spur of the moment. Tell them to look through magazines and online of poses they want to try and of photo styles or lighting schemes that they admire. Have your subject show you these images. Tell your subject to wear an outfit that they feel confident in and to bring an outfit to change into. Ask your subjects if there is a location that they would prefer to shoot in. If there is, visit this location before the photo session to scout background ideas and get an idea of what the lighting is like at certain times of the day.