Is a portrait created in the camera, or in the mind of the photographer before he/she takes the photo?  Whether you are young or old, a newbie or established, any portrait should be created in your mind before you ever pick up a camera.  Young, as well as old, too many photographers rely on the law of averages, taking way too many images in the hopes something looks good.  A client should be able to tell you what they have in mind and you should be able to visualize exactly what the image will look like and know exactly what to do in order to produce the portrait that both you and the client have in mind.

Visualization is the first step in creating a portrait by design, rather than default.  As you look at images that impress you, go beyond trying to figure out where the photographer placed the lights, camera height and pose, trying to figure out why he or she made those choices.  It is easy to see how a good photographer does what he/she does, but once you can figure out ‘WHY’ they do it, you are on your way to mastery.  You or I can look into the subject’s eyes of any portrait and see the type of lighting that was used and its relative positions (by the catch lights), but to understand why the photographer made the choices he/she did to create a striking portrait is the only way to duplicate the thought process to duplicate the results!



~ by jeffsmithbooks on June 19, 2012.

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