Achieving a ‘Big’ Look with little Gear | Using What You Have

A Guest post by Judd Green

Bandshoot

There’s always, always an upgrade that I ‘need’ or a new lens I ‘can’t do without’. And I could easily convince myself, and the boss (the wife) I can’t do my next shoot without getting this strobe or lens or wireless system, it would make the shoot awesome! Turns out the gear doesn’t make you awesome, you make you awesome. I have consciously decided to not upgrade any of my gear yet, I’ve made the decision to push my knowledge and the gear that I have to achieve what I want to achieve.

I recently had a band approach me to do some promo shots for them. All they gave me to work with was ‘classy with an edge’ which sounded like fun. Straight away I’m thinking I wanted the ‘look’ of a big production, I organized to do the shoot in a warehouse to give the ‘edge’ and have a set up with a lounge, side table and lamp to add some class. I’ve seen with something like this you’d have strobes and reflectors and assistants running around everywhere. I had my 580exii, a $100 strobe I bought off ebay and my mate Dylan.

I did the shoot with my 5d2 (would love to get the mark 3) and a cactus v4 wireless system (would love to get a pocket wizard system) and my 24-70 lens that I have dropped in the past (would love to upgrade that too) and my 580exii and a cheap strobe.

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We had no ambient light to work with and in order to light every band member up perfectly I had to shoot them one at a time as a composite image so it would be a simple cut and paste job later. One good tip also when doing this style of shoot is to get a ‘clean slate’ shot, a shot with nothing in it but the background, it just makes it easier to cut and paste onto.

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Don’t let only having little gear stop you from achieving what you want to achieve, but make sure you work it all out before hand, you can never be too prepared when it comes to shoots as to not waste your clients time.

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Pushing boundaries and my knowledge is what I love about photography, I had an idea and a goal set and then just made it happen. Learn the gear you have and become excellent at it. It’s always nice to get the latest and newest gear, and it often helps and makes things easier, but it’s not the gear that makes you awesome, it’s you.

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Judd Green is a Photographer from Brisbane Australia. See more of his work at http://www.juddricphotography.com

Post originally from: Digital Photography Tips.

Check out our more Photography Tips at Photography Tips for Beginners, Portrait Photography Tips and Wedding Photography Tips.

Achieving a ‘Big’ Look with little Gear | Using What You Have

5 Tips For Capturing Great Street Portraits

A Guest Post by Desmond Louw

I just love street photography and with this comes street portraiture.

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It can be a bit daunting to go up to a stranger and ask them to take their photo, but after a day or two it becomes addictive! Here are some tricks that might make it a bit easier for you:

Trick number 1

?Always have your camera with you, don’t lug your whole photo bag or a tripod around like a tourist in your own town, just have your camera body and one lens handy. It sucks walking in the street and seeing something awesome and not having my camera with me!

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Trick number 2

?Have a good lens, this makes a huge impact. I like the 50mm F1.4/F1.8 and the 85mm F1.4/ F1.8, they are also small and relatively lightweight.

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The wide aperture isolates your subject nicely with a shallow depth of field.

Trick number 3

?Don’t use a flash! Remember you want to maintain a low profile. Rather push your ISO up if you have to. I personaly think an onboard flash could spoil a photo.

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Trick number 4

?Before approaching a person to ask him or her if you can take a photo, have your settings spot on. When they say yes, lift your arms and snap snap snap, say thank you, and walk away. Easy.

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Trick number 5

?If you are taking a shot of someone without them knowing, keep the auto focus assist light off, otherwise they will see it and spoil the mood.

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Connect with Desmnd Louw at his website and on instagram where his id is – desmond_in_capetown

Post originally from: Digital Photography Tips.

Check out our more Photography Tips at Photography Tips for Beginners, Portrait Photography Tips and Wedding Photography Tips.

5 Tips For Capturing Great Street Portraits

How to Take Extraordinary Photos by Thinking Creatively

A Guest Post by Piper Mackay from http://www.pipermackayphotography.com.

The creativity in your photographs is what will make your imagery stand out. Most of us, if we commit the time, can technically master the craft of photography. Capturing a compelling image can be much more difficult especially when you are excited, experiencing something for the first time, and are visually overloaded.

You begin pointing and shooting at everything you see. You arrive home, look at your photographs, and see that you have captured extraordinary subjects or a beautiful location, but the images are somewhat mediocre. Taking an extraordinary photograph of and extraordinary subject is what you want to strive for.

I want to share with you a few tips that can quickly help elevate the creativity in your photography and help you to focus on the artistic side of photography; without the creative process, you are really only turning dials and pushing buttons.

Portraits

Thinking creatively

The eyes are the windows to the soul. If you are going to place your subject in the center, get close, fill the frame and deeply connect with your subject.
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A more interesting portrait composition is to place your subject off center, looking into the frame at a slight angle, with a blurred out or clean background.

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Now up your game and add layers of impact by adding a simple, but beautiful background.

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Take it one step further by adding a second person to draw the viewer more deeply into the frame.

Drawing the Eye

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One of the basic rules of composition is leading lines, but if there is more than one, it can be more effective in keeping the viewer in the photograph longer. In this image there is a leading line from the bottom right to the top left and another one that leads the viewer back across the photograph.

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Using layers of impact makes for a very powerful image. When photographing people I love to use a wide-angle lens, getting up close to my main subject with something interesting in the background to draw the view into the photograph. Here my main subjects are interesting, positioned in front of a beautiful background along the Omo River that curves and leads to the women in the distance, creating layers of impact and depth in the image.

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I love using selective focus to draw the viewer’s eye exactly were I want it. This usually works best with repeating patterns and groups of items such as: spices or vegetables, crafts at a local market, flowers in a field or a herd of animals, as a few examples.

Change your Perspective

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Being at eye level with your subject makes for a more dynamic image. So, if your subject is down on the ground, hit the dirt and get dirty. Picture in your mind how this photograph would look if you stood and shot down on these subjects. This angle makes the viewer feel as though they are there.

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Most people would have just taken this photograph from the shore with a zoom lens but I wanted something more powerful. I planned to be in this area during the dry season, suffering in 110+ heat when the river would be at its lowest. I got into the river with my wide-angle lens and photographed this at eye level with the canoe. There were a lot of challenges, watching out for crocs was one of them, and although I did not get the photograph I had envisioned, I knew I and a unique perspective.

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Shoot from a different angle. Getting lower than your subject adds drama and power. The opposite can work as well-get above your subject and shoot down on them.

Most importantly, it does not have to be new; it has to be you. We all see things differently and express them differently. This is the reason many of us picked up the camera, to seek out places for ourselves that we have already viewed through someone else’s eyes. We want to experience it for ourselves, capturing our own vision. The way you express your unique view through the lens is what makes it new and interesting.

Piper Mackay is a professional travel and wildlife photographer whose work is heavily based in Eastern Africa. She is currently leading both wildlife and cultural safaris in Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda and Ethiopia. Her work is represented by Getty images and she is and instructor for the Travel and Editorial track at Calumet. View her work at http://www.pipermackayphotography.com.

Post originally from: Digital Photography Tips.

Check out our more Photography Tips at Photography Tips for Beginners, Portrait Photography Tips and Wedding Photography Tips.

How to Take Extraordinary Photos by Thinking Creatively

Posing Guide: 21 Sample Poses to Get You Started with Glamour Photography

No doubt, today’s media and advertising industry heavily exploits “fashion” and “sexy” themes (sometimes indeed too much). Over time public perception of what is acceptable has also broadened. This trend drives the demand and naturally glamour photography is increasing in popularity. Specialized glamour photo studios are opening with photographers working together with professional hair and makeup artists in order to provide a kind of “fashion model” experience for their clients.

Increasing popularity of this genre of photography is not surprising, many women like the whole experience – dressing up, trying on different ideas and accessories, creating different moods. And glamour is the perfect match for that. But there are several factors each of which can mean all the difference for the final result – hair and makeup, clothing and accessories, lights and posing. Of course, each of these are a broad subjects and in this article we will only touch the surface of the posing part.

So here follow sample poses that you can use as the starting point for your glamour portraits or simply as an idea for a shot.

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1. Good starting pose for an intimate glamour. Works well in different surface settings: the model, for example, might lie on a bed, on the ground, in the grass, or on a sandy beach.

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2. Just a different variant for the model lying down. Works very well with all body types.

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3. Really nice and lovely pose. Shoot from a low angle. Ask the model to keep her upper body slightly lifted, but the head – slightly tilted down. Toes should always be pointed.

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4. A demanding pose. A few things need to be checked: Supporting hand must be turned away from the body, stomach muscles should be controlled, and feet need to be stretched. Works only with slim to athletic body types.

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5. Another challenging pose. Not so easy to pose and very demanding for a photographer. In order to shoot this pose successfully you have to pay attention and scan all body parts – hands, head, waist (avoid skin creases!), hips and finally legs.

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6. Beautiful pose for an outdoor shooting. Ask your model to lay down, curve her back and stretch her feet.

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7. Beautiful pose for the model lying on the ground. Upper body should be slightly lifted and the model looking back over her shoulder. Works well with all body types. Try different angles and look for the best position by moving gradually around the model.

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8. Easy and simple pose to emphasize a feminine shape. Works also well as a silhouette against a bright background.

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9. Variant for fine arts nude photography. Variations are endless with different hand, leg and head positioning.

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10. Easy and gentle pose. A model should sit on both of her legs and feet, but it shouldn’t be too heavy. Eyes looking over her shoulder.

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11. Easy yet gorgeous pose. Works well in different settings, both indoors and outdoors. Also suitable for a silhouette shot against a bright background.

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12. An absolutely gorgeous pose if done properly. Correct limb positioning is crucial. Works exceptionally well with all body types. Also note that you should make your shots from a slightly elevated angle.

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13. Very challenging pose, leg positioning being the decisive factor for good results. Carefully guide your model to the intended postures. High heel shoes are a must.

Posing guide glamour 14

14. Simple and dignified pose. Make sure that model’s face is not partly covered by her hand or shoulder. Eyes looking down to her body creates particularly romantic mood. The raised elbow should be pointing away from the camera.

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15. Very feminine and delicate pose. Remember that glamour and nude photography doesn’t exclude using some props. Sometimes a single piece of clothing might be a superb addition to a shot. Thus, the model might partly cover her body.

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16. Very helpful aid for creating different poses is utilizing a wall (or any other object of a kind). Wall can be used as a place to put hands on, support a body, back, legs etc.

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17. Full height at the wall shot. Again, endless variation and shooting angles are possible.

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18. Following from the previous, for example, change you angle and shoot as well from the back.

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19. An exquisite pose for slim to athletic models. Many variations are possible. Ask the model to curve a body in S shape, twist her hips and change hand positions. Let her turn her head in different directions.

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20. Using a sheer textile as a prop creates endless possibilities for the model and photographer to create very rewarding and outstanding results. Especially marvelous looks can be made in windy weather conditions outdoors.

Posing guide glamour 21

21. Another good idea for a creative glamour photography is to shoot in vast open fields, for example, some cornfield or wildflowers meadow or even in a deserted landscape. As previously mentioned some textile or other piece of clothing is very helpful for the model to come up with some interesting and graceful postures.

As a final note I will say once again – each of these initial sample poses is only a starting point. Each pose has endless variations. First of all, the model can always try different face expressions, smiles, head turns, hand and leg placements, body turns and twists etc. Only slight variations can make a completely different pose (and a better one!). Moreover, always remember to take a shot from different angles (up and down, right and left), try changing your distance to subject, try different crops and compositions of your shots. After all, posing is trial and error effort. The more variations you will try, the better results you will get.

Finally, you may want to look at Posing Women Part I and Posing Women Part II articles in this series for additional ideas on posing your models.

And I would really like to hear your experience with these posing samples. Please feel free to leave a comment.

More Posing Guides

If you find this article helpful, you may want to check out previous articles from the posing guide series:

  • Posing Guide: Sample poses for photographing Women – Part I
  • Posing Guide: Sample Poses for Photographing Women – Part II
  • Posing Guide: Sample poses for photographing Men
  • Posing Guide: Sample Poses for photographing Children
  • Posing Guide: Sample Poses for Photographing Couples
  • Posing Guide: Sample Poses for Photographing Groups of People
  • Posing Guide: Sample Poses for Photographing Weddings

Kaspars Grinvalds is a photographer working and living in Riga, Latvia. He is the author of Posing App where more poses and tips about people photography are available.

Post originally from: Digital Photography Tips.

Check out our more Photography Tips at Photography Tips for Beginners, Portrait Photography Tips and Wedding Photography Tips.

Posing Guide: 21 Sample Poses to Get You Started with Glamour Photography