ZoomIn’s guide to Portrait Photography – Part I

May 8, 2013 at 11:28 pm

Portrait photos have always been popular. And in today’s connected world everyone wants a really great portrait photo for their profiles! So we are bringing you  a basic guide on how to capture a  good portrait photo in  a series of three posts. Today’s post will cover composition….

Composition: The process of putting your photo together, i.e. ‘Composition’, is arguably the most important aspect of capturing a good portrait shot. The placement or arrangement of your subject in the photo is extremely important. Here are a few pointers:

  • Off Center: A good rule in composing a portrait would be to keep your subject off the centre of the photo. Keeping your subject towards either side of the photo proves to be more interesting. This tends to creates a lot of interest and drama, and will work almost every time. With that said, try not to compose every photo in this manner as the results would then become quite repetitive.
  • Fill frame: The crux of portrait photos is to highlight one single element – your subject. One way of getting this done is by ensuring you fill the frame of your shot with the subject – around 70% of your photo should comprise of the subject. This means that you need to get up close to the subject or zoom in. It is possible that your subject’s features might get cropped in the process, but that’s a call you can take- does it look fine or a bit strange?
  • Focus: As mentioned above, you really need to concentrate on your subject. To get a  good output, you need to make it a point to focus only on the subject and the rest can be set out of focus. Don’t forget that the eyes are the window to one’s soul. So focus on your subject’s eyes while taking that shot!
An attractive click: This photo is a perfect blend of all the points discussed above.

Composition: This photo is a perfect blend of all the points discussed above. The subject lies towards one side of the photo, occupies most of the frame and the focus also, is solely on the subject. While the top of the subject’s head is slightly cropped, the overall effect still looks good.

Part II will focus on Light and Background and Part III will focus on Pose, Mood and other pointers. Stay tuned…