Tuesday, October 27, 2009

headshot practice

The other day, my roommate, Jenny asked me if I would do some head shots of her. Of course I said, yes. I can use all the practice I can get.

Question. Do the shadows in the background of the first 2 shots make them look un-professional and amateur?


  1. A few tips if that's ok:

    1. Use a prime lens with wide aperture. f/1.8 or faster. Try the Canon 50mm f/1.4. This is essential for a good portrait shot.

    2. Get an external flash unit with a flash diffuser or bounce the flash off a reflective ceiling or wall surface to get more light diffusion. The shadow cast is very un pro. Built-in camera flashes should be banned on DSLRs.

    3. Seat the subject farther from the wall to minimize shadows. Ideally, you'd have some studio strobes as fill light from behind to supplement the foreground light, but we can't all have that fancy equipment.

    4. Try shooting from different angles. You mostly used a head down shot, which exaggerates the forehead. Shooting from down low is usually not flattering either, but since each subject varies, you should shoot some pics from every possible angle.

    5. Adjust the hair for the subject so that it is not too distracting. The hair looks frizzied in all but the last shot.

    6. You've taken some good pics and were able to keep the subject relaxed. Keep at it and have fun!


  2. Aren't headshots usually black and white?