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15 GENERAL PORTRAIT PHOTO MISTAKES

To make successful photographic portraits, you need to think not only about the camera settings: you must control that the lighting is set correctly, there is a suitable background, and also a wardrobe and other details for shooting are at hand. But most attention needs to be paid to the people you are photographing.

Combining all this is not easy, especially if you have little or no experience.

A good way to get experience is to practice portraits of someone you know and like to take pictures of. Working with the same person on more than one or two photo shoots will help develop the necessary skills. At first, many make typical mistakes in portrait photography. Try to avoid them.

Bad composition
The most common mistake in portrait composition is too much space above the subject’s head. This emptiness in the portrait, as a rule, does nothing for the appearance of the photograph. And if there is no meaning in this space, cut it off.

Distracting background
Too much detail in focus behind your subject may divert attention from it. Carefully choose a position. Choose your lens carefully. Using a long-focus lens reduces the amount of background in the frame.

The subject is too close to the background.
Even with a simple background, it will be better if you separate the subject from it.

Object out of focus
You may be tempted to open the aperture wide to blur the distracting background. But be careful with this technique, so as not to lose focus on the object. Blurring the background may result in too much blurring of the subject.

Eyes out of focus
If the subject has eyes, focus on them. This is one of the important rules of photography. Very rarely, a portrait with eyes out of focus looks good. When the model is looking directly into the camera, it is easy to focus both eyes. In case the head is turned to the side, you need to focus on the eye that is closer to the camera.

Slow shutter speed
People move. You need to select a fast enough exposure so that you can “freeze” the movement. Even if the movement is small, it can still lead to a blurry image in the case of an excessively low shutter speed.

Usually it is enough to use a shutter speed of 1/250 seconds.

Bad light
Modern cameras can take photos in low light, so it is easy to make mistakes in the settings.

It is very important to have the right lighting to create a mood. If you need a soft and romantic portrait, the hard, high-contrast lighting does not suit here. Similarly, a soft light will not help you create a dramatic atmosphere in a photograph.

Bad moment of shooting
To catch the right moment of shooting is very important. If you miss this moment, the people you are shooting may not want to pose again.

The choice of the moment of shooting can be successful or spoil the portrait. It is important to wait and watch the face of the person to press the shutter button at the right time. Most people will not look at your camera without changing their facial expressions, so you should be ready to catch a moment when they look best.

If you photograph a person who often blinks, you will have to catch the moment when the person has his eyes open.

Not enough photos
You will need to take quite a few photos. A small number of shots will upset you when you edit and process photos, because you will have too little choice.

But do not sit with the camera in burst mode, filling the memory card with almost identical images. Strive to create a variety of images, it will facilitate the task of choice.

Too many photos
It may be difficult to find a balance between insufficient and too many photos.

It will be more convenient for some people to take pictures of a longer period of time compared to others. You must understand this. If your subject becomes boring or gets nervous because you shoot him too long or take too many photos, it will be visible on his face. As a result, the quality of the photo will suffer.

Lack of understanding with the subject
Good contact with the person you are photographing is one of the most important aspects of portrait shooting. Building a rapport with your subject, even if you only have a few minutes to shoot, can have a big impact on the final images.

photo by Kevin Landwer-Johan

When your man is relaxed with you and happy, you get the best shots. Your style of communication with the shooting character is very important.

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