Posted by: catailsandotherfoundthings | March 1, 2010

Photography Tips

Physical Likeness & Character Make a Good Portrait


We have all gotten lucky at one time or another and had a photograph we had taken come out extraordinarily beautiful.  We have also had many more that were unmentionable.  A good portrait will contain at least one element that reveals the subjects personality, attitude, unique mannerisms, special markings in the case of an animal or any other features or traits that form the individual nature of the subject.  To do this you must feature a common ground in the picture with the subjects mannerisms, interests etc., and show the subject relaxed in most cases ( I have seen portraits of horses in a raring up position that are very beautiful though unrelaxed, but this is an exception).


I love to capture children’s pictures when they are no aware the camera is on them.  They tend to go right into a posing mode as soon as they see the camera and very often lose the spontenaety we love to see in their portraits.  To see a toddler climbing into a wagon, a little girl playing dress up or a child with a pet and not be aware of a photo being taken can be an awesome candid photograph for a portrait.  Don’t hesitate to take lots of pictures even though you may feel you have already captured the shot you want.  We are often surprised how different certain shots look once they are printed or cropped.


Adult Portraits are often more dramatic when the subject is looking directly at the camera, whether formal or casual in dress or pose.  Lighting plays an important role also  An in’in studio’  photographic portrait most often lacks shadows while for the painted portrait it is important for the painting to have contrasts to create the 3D effect we want to make the portrait realistic.  Whether you choose a posed or candid picture to have a portrait painted of, try to choose the one that best shows a good likeness of and character of the subject.


For me pet portrait photographs has been the most difficult to capture all that I strive for.  It seems I need to take at least twice as many pictures as I do for People Portraits.  I guess it is because they are not as cooperative during a shoot.  If you are considering a pet portrait painting, I would suggest you keep your camera handy and take pictures often until you find the one best represents you pet.


Try to stay on the same level as your subject or sometimes even being a bit lower than your subject can dramatize and best show off the event you are trying to capture.


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