Outdoor portrait photography causes a lot of difficulties for photographers who are used to working in a studio. However, it is on the street that you should go for unusual, bright, and infinitely diverse shots. Moreover, many of your own mistakes or details of the model’s appearance can be corrected in post-processing. For example, it is often necessary to remove braces app RetouchMe. This professional photo editing service will allow you to erase the temporary accessory from your photos.
Use all lighting options
You often hear that the ideal conditions for outdoor portraits are only during the “golden hour” — the period shortly after sunrise and before sunset. This option of lighting will not always correspond to the concept of shooting, the capabilities of the photographer and the model. You can get spectacular shots at any time of the day. Noon shows beautiful sky and water, although it requires the use of reflectors, diffusers, and sometimes additional light sources to remove sharp shadows from the face of the model.
Excellent lighting develops in overcast weather, including before or just after rain. Wind, impending storm clouds, and lightning can create a very atmospheric backdrop for a shoot. All you have to do is hide from the downpour. You can get interesting shots when shooting at dusk (the so-called “blue hour”) or at night. In both cases, you will need additional lighting sources (garlands, bonfires, neon signs, lanterns, your equipment) and a fast lens.
Choose the right background
There are plenty of backgrounds outdoors: brick and concrete walls, dense foliage, grasses and flowers, graffiti, lights from signs and lanterns, and decorated storefronts. At the same time, the background should not distract the viewer from the model, for example, because of the abundance of details or excessive color contrast. To transform the background, make it less distracting and separate the model from it you can use the bokeh effect. But do not abuse it: if the photo shoot consists only of such shots, it looks somewhat primitive.
Work with natural lines
Use background details such as walls, streetcar or train tracks, wires, roads, and park alleys to give your photo a visual rhythm. This geometric component directs the viewer’s eye, emphasizing perspective without taking attention away from the model.
Use different lenses
Traditionally, lenses with a focal length of 60–105 mm are used for portraits. However, the fixed shooting distance somewhat impoverishes the photographer’s “repertoire” and can prevent him from making a truly original shot.
That’s why professionals recommend supplementing the equipment set with a long focal length lens. It allows you to easily achieve a shallow depth of sharply depicted space. In addition, working on the street usually allows you to move away from the model and shoot her full-length without much distortion of proportions. An additional “plus” — when you increase the distance the background and foreground are visually closer to the model. This technique makes the scene more camera-like but still leaves a sense of free space.
Don’t hesitate to use an external (not built-in) flash
Even though there is plenty of natural light outdoors, a photographer can still use professional equipment. By changing the position of the flash, you can use it as a fill or drawing light source. This will correct the non-ideal natural conditions of the plein air. The use of diffusing attachments will soften the flashlight, and for dramatic effect, you can leave the light sharp.
In general, portrait photography in nature or a cityscape opens up a wide range of perspectives for creativity and visual experimentation.