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Senior Portrait Photography — 5 Awesome Tips For Photographing The Teens

Senior portraits or high school senior portrait photography as it is generally referred to as, are formal portraits of students (teens to be more precise) taken at the beginning of their senior school of high school. This stepping into the new life, with fresh air and gross attitude is an amazing turning point of life for the high school seniors to cherish for a long time to come. Apart from being contender for school yearbook, the senior portrait pictures make way for amazing photo-gifts and memorable albums. Being a popular genre of portrait photography, mostly all the techniques of portrait photography apply to this form of art as well. Here are 5 tips for taking great senior portraits; to help you gel well with the teens for outstanding results reflecting the true personality of the teens — grown up attitude with a little bit of childishness.

  1. Personalize The Senior Portrait Session

    Establishing the rapport with your client is the very first step when it comes to portrait photography. Hosting a pre-session consultation in this regard is a great way for breaking the ice. As much as it helps the photographer in understanding what the client wants, it also helps in boosting the client’s confidence. The pre-session consultation acts as the groundwork for a great photo-shoot ahead. Professional photographers arrange for pre-session consultation meetings with the teen and his or her parents to discuss about clothing, location, portrait styles and senior portrait photography poses and ideas to begin with.

  2. Recommend Clothing, Accessories And Props

    Style, attitude, unique personality, liveliness and the transition in the physical appearance give a distinct identity to the senior portraits. And as a photographer it your responsibility to capture the unique characteristics of their personality on the photographic frame. The clothes, the accessories and the props, both of you choose for the senior portrait session help in defining the attitude of teens. While casual clothes almost always look cool, formal clothes, party dress up, stylish sunglasses, scarves, hats, shoes, stuffed toys, basketball, etc are sure to add flair to the photographs.

  3. Guide The Senior Portraits For Posing & Expression

    The most important ingredients that make for great results is the expression — a lot of which is conveyed by the poses. Senior portraits are full of life and fun, but when they come in front of the camera the natural expressions take place of the fake smile. Don’t let this fear, scariness and uncertainty ruin the photographs. Make your subject comfortable by directing the poses which just happen; without much effort.4077040020_b00e5b60db

  4. Control The Photo-shoot Creatively

    With a successful pre-session consultation meet and friendly interaction with your client when everything is falling into place, it’s time to let your creative juices flowing. Smartly take the control of the session and make the most of the photo-shoot. Employ various lighting techniques for creating flattering images of the subject. Shoot the action, go in for shallow depth of field, add the context to the story with selective backgrounds, relieve the stress and have fun.

  5. Add Interest With Artistic Enhancements

    Final finishing touches like enhancing the complexion, tweaking the contrast, adding vignetting effect, etc are a must for creating a lasting appeal. Re-touch the portraits for a professional finish and go beyond the edges to give classy touch to the portraits. Try your hands at artistic enhancements like black and white conversion, tinting and toning, hand-coloring or simply pep up the colors to match up with the vibrancy, vivacity and liveliness of the senior portraits.

Last but not the least, enjoy the photo-shoot and have fun!

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5 comments… add one
  • subroto mukerji Feb 25, 2012 @ 12:07

    Elizabeth — At last I have a couple of portraits of seniors, but since I don’t know how to upload them on AP.Net, I hope you (and others) won’t mind if I request you to see my flickr contributions at


    This is a portrait of famous author Ruskin Bond. He’s 78 years old and still going strong. In the event, I ended up taking only my Nikon Coolpix P500 with me to Mussoorie. This was its first real field trial, and I think it performed pretty well, all things considered…

    Please also see http://www.flickr.com/photos/75991357@N05/6779248344/in/photostream/ for a portrait of a seasoned veteran from the dry high altitude desertland of LADAKH, in northern India. I took this portrait yesterday (24 Feb 2012). The REAL original is much larger.

    Thanks and regards,

    Subroto Mukerji

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