Free Trial

Safari Books Online is a digital library providing on-demand subscription access to thousands of learning resources.

  • Create BookmarkCreate Bookmark
  • Create Note or TagCreate Note or Tag
  • PrintPrint
Share this Page URL
Help

CHAPTER 6. PORTRAITS > 50 Lighting a Portrait

50 Lighting a Portrait

The importance of light in shooting a portrait can’t be overstated. A soft, warm light angled from below flatters most faces, while a harsh flash in front of your subject eliminates all of the shadows that give a face its character. When taking photographs indoors, you have a few options to make use of indirect lighting: you can use an external flash that can be angled upward, you can use a diffuser for the flash (see tip 57), or you can position the subject to face a window.

An easy way around the problem of glare from eyeglasses is to have the subject slide his or her glasses down a bit. Check to make sure that your subject’s pupils aren’t hidden.

Photographic reflectors are useful in eliminating shadows, but you can also use a sheet of white foamcore or cardboard in a pinch. These tricks also work outdoors, where you may also have the converse problem of needing a white screen such as a white umbrella to temper harsh sunlight (make sure that whatever you use for a screen doesn’t have text printed on it, because it will cast unwanted shadows). Your subject can be placed under the screen or umbrella, so natural soft shadows will appear in his or her face and squinting in the sun can be avoided altogether.


  

You are currently reading a PREVIEW of this book.

                                                                                                                    

Get instant access to over $1 million worth of books and videos.

  

Start a Free Trial


  
  • Safari Books Online
  • Create BookmarkCreate Bookmark
  • Create Note or TagCreate Note or Tag
  • PrintPrint