Portraits? Come on… Well, but aren’t those the only photographs where the subject can talk back to you? Yes, portraits have the potential to get you the maximum reaction and promotion. And portraits are one of the most common types of photography — you don’t need to look for a nice subject with sunlight, greenery and waterfalls etc. Done well, the subject would promote you for free. So here are 5 simple techniques to add flair to your portraits:
Play With Eye Contact
The eye is the liveliest and the most expressive part of the human body. As the popular quote says, “The eyes are the mirror of the soul”, it is one of the best practice to focus on eyes for portrait session. Go for a close-up and try catchlights to add interest. Retouch and sharpen the eyelashes a bit and you are in for some wonderful finishes.
Ask your subject to look into the camera and don’t shy away from photographing the eyes leading out of the frame. The way you focus on the eyes and play with eye contact changes the mood and feel of an image. For instance, direct eye contact silently speaks volumes about the subject’s mood whereas eye contact between the subjects portrays the level of intimacy and adds “love in is the air” feel; especially when a wedding couple is photographed.
Reflections And Reflectors
Add drama to your shots by introducing abstract elements like reflections and shadows. Well not just the reflections in water! Utilize the reflective surfaces or shoot mirror images. Just hold the reflecting surface close enough to the subject so that it doesn’t actually become a part of the picture. You can also try some reflectors to lighten up the shadows or use a golden reflector and silver dish for some glamor effects.
Try A Flash Diffuser
It’s just a plastic cap that you place over the flash and get going with some beautiful diffused and soft light. The direct flash on the camera without a diffuser looks a tad unflattering otherwise. A flash diffuser allows you to eliminate harsh light and shadows to thus evenly illuminate the scene for a natural look. You can find one here or simply go in for DIY homemade soft flash diffuser.
This is more of an exception than a rule. But sometimes experimenting with effects like multiple exposure can land you some moody shots with added interest. Turn on the multiple exposure and set the number of shots required to create the desired effect. These special effects enhances the subject or the scene and renders dreamy & nostalgic air to it. Get creative at it!
Just fire up Lightroom, play around with vibrance, saturation, vignetting, split toning, etc or simply try a preset. Use any of your favorite photo editor to add some amazing image-effects. From one touch effects like sepia and black & whites to the 300 effect, anything is possible. And guess what, these attract more interest than the plainly retouched portraits.
How do you add uniqueness to your portraits?