Portrait Photography Without Lighting Studio

How to have portrait photography without lighting studio, commonly know as studio portrait. As an amateur photographer, I have used SLR camera, as well as, the point-and-shoot compact camera. Both has given me some experiences that portrait photography can possibly be done, even without a proper light studio for the professional.

I enjoy taking photographs of friends or family. These days, any user can easily learn to take pictures without worrying of its setting or adjustment. Modern cameras are build in with with lots of automated features, such as auto focus, exposure, zooming, face-detection, etc. The results can be excellent most of the time. At times, the outcome can be so badly that one continue to snap more picture till the good one appears. So what actually contribute to a good portrait photography without proper studio? Below are 2 factors that can help anyone to have notice a major difference and better results.

1) Using of on-camera flash

On-camera flash is never flattering; not only does it show every flaw and blemish, but the harsh directional light creates ugly shadows and the dreaded red-eye.

Studio portrait photographers use large flash units on stands with special softbox attachments to diffuse the light. For the home studio, all you need is an overcast day. Simply named it as ‘natural light’ in photographic terms. Place your subject by a large windows, seated so they are facing slightly towards the light. For outdoors, recommended place will be under a shade in the day.

This is all you need to do, though if the other side of their face looks too dark, you might want to employ a sheet card a a reflector to bounce some of the daylight back. A oversized white sheet taped to the wall behind them is perfect.

Most of the cameras if set to full auto, will have their on-camera flash triggered upon detect insufficient lighting. You can st it to “Without Flash”.

2) Zoom Setting

The key thing here is not to use the wide end of the zoom. If you have a 3x zoom on your camera, step backwards and use the longest zoom setting. If the zoom is longer, aim for at least the mid-way point. This will produce more flattering perspective – and avoid the ‘back of the spoon’ effect of shooting with a wide lens. The negative effect of ‘back of the spoon’ tend to be more prominent with wide angle lens, especially for SLR cameras. If the framing of the portrait is only to the face closeup, it will look kind of ‘stretched’ or slightly rounded.