Wednesday, February 6, 2019

Preparing for your Portrait Photo Session: Part One

When preparing for your portrait photo session, you should take into consideration many factors, including by not limited to clothes, props, lighting, location, backdrop, and vision. This article will specifically cover what type of portrait you will be taking and where.

What type of portrait will you be taking?

A family portrait session is much different than a school, business or newborn portrait. Pertaining to clothes, a general rule of thumb for group or family portraits is to choose 1 to 3 colors which are similar tones that go well together. The days of white shirts and khaki pants are over. Choose soft colors like light blue, gray and blush or warm colors such as brown, orange and burgundy
School and business portraits are often taken indoors with a backdrop in the background. Solid colored shirts are often your best bet for these types of portraits. If you like white, we suggest going with an ivory or off-white instead. If you are looking to add another layer of customization, try utilizing a scarf, blazer, cardigan or jewelry.  

Newborn portrait sessions are becoming very popular and are often more fun and creative. Newborns in their natural, no clothes environment are one way to take newborn portraits. Another way is to use props such as hats, sunglasses, toys and stools to spruce up the portrait. If you are looking to have your newborn wear clothes, solid colors, again are your best option.

Where will you be taking to portrait?

When it comes to choosing where to take your portrait you have three main options. (1) Indoors in a professional studio. (2) On site at your home or office (3) Outdoors.

If you choose to have your portrait taken indoors, most professional photographers have dozens (upon dozens) of backgrounds to choose from. You will want to make sure you choose a background that will match well with your outfit. If you chose to wear grey, choosing a grey backdrop may not be the best choice. 

Many choose to take their portraits on-location or outdoors. You will want to take your location into consideration when choosing your outfit. For example, if it is winter and there is snow on the ground, white is generally not a good color option. Red on the other hand is. If taking your portrait in the Fall when there is beautiful colors on the trees - orange, tan, dark browns are good complementary colors for your outfit.

Ultimately, the vision you have for your portrait comes down to how you will execute your portrait photo session. Choose a professional photographer who will walk you through the whole experience from start to finish. The session itself will last about an hour, but your photographer should invest additional time to cropping, photo shopping, etc to present you with the best proofs possible.