First real attempt at a portrait

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by Gaerek, Oct 23, 2009.

  1. Gaerek

    Gaerek TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    May 2, 2009
    Messages:
    1,341
    Likes Received:
    98
    Location:
    Sitka, AK
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    I haven't really done much portrait work, besides candids. But, my wife wanted to get some Halloween portraits of our 6 month old in her costume, so I obliged. This was shot with my 50mm 1.8, on my XTi. The sun was about 45 minutes from setting, so there was some very nice warm light coming from the right side of the frame. This was shot at f/3.2, at 1/125sec at ISO 200. As a father, I absolutely love this shot, and I know it's going to have a place in the ol' family album for a long time. However, as a photographer, I have a bunch of nitpicks. First, her face is out of focus. Second, that leaf in front of her is so sharp, it's distracting. Also, there seems to be a lot of blown highlights. I burned down a bunch of them, especially on the pumpkin on the right, but there's only so much that can be done. I did use my 430EX II flash for fill, but I'm not sure it was needed. I probably should have still used it, but turned it down a bit. C&C Appreciated! Thanks.

    [​IMG]
     
  2. BmDubb

    BmDubb TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2009
    Messages:
    243
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Knoxville, Tennessee
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    Nice shot.. Just looks a little " Dull ". Not sure why I dont see any real techincal issures
     
  3. Felix0890

    Felix0890 TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2009
    Messages:
    472
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Miami , FL
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    This would look better if you lowered yourself to his eye-level. Other than that, it's adorable! :)
     
  4. bigtwinky

    bigtwinky No longer a newbie, moving up!

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2008
    Messages:
    4,820
    Likes Received:
    285
    Location:
    Montreal
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    Definatly one for the family album.

    I find the image is too centered and too straight on. Look at different composition to get rules of portraiture and think about shooting closer up, at angles, higher, lower, etc..
     
  5. BmDubb

    BmDubb TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2009
    Messages:
    243
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Knoxville, Tennessee
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    I think for me, the background was taking attention off the kid. There were so many bright "highlights of color" in the background. Heres what I came up with.. More pleasing to the eye to ME personally.. but just me 2 cents
    [​IMG]
     
  6. Gaerek

    Gaerek TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    May 2, 2009
    Messages:
    1,341
    Likes Received:
    98
    Location:
    Sitka, AK
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    Thank you all for the feedback. I thought I was low enough, but I guess when you're 6'5", being on your knees, shooting an infant is still a bit too high, lol.

    If we get another nice day like this before Halloween (probably unlikely, rain forcasted for at least a week) I'll try to re-shoot this. I can definitely see moving around a bit and trying some other angles out. An infant was probably not my best subject for a first portrait...they just move and fidget too much. Thanks again for the feedback. :)
     
  7. Felix0890

    Felix0890 TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2009
    Messages:
    472
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Miami , FL
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    I like the edited version. It does bring more attention to the child.

    Instead of kneeling down, lie down on the ground to get a better angle. As for the subject being too centered, I disagree. For some shots, a centered subject works. This is one of them, IMO. Shooting from a different angle, though, I agree with. As a rule of thumb for portraiture, you never want to have the subject's body and head in the same direction. Think back to your school yearbook days and how they always made you sit with your body at an angle with your head looking at the camera. Of course, a toddler won't always cooperate but moving to one of his sides and dangling keys or a toy to get him to turn to you might work.
     
  8. Ryvax

    Ryvax TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2009
    Messages:
    79
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Cold Lake AB
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    Where did you get that Ewok costume? That's awesome. Nice pic too.
     
  9. Gaerek

    Gaerek TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    May 2, 2009
    Messages:
    1,341
    Likes Received:
    98
    Location:
    Sitka, AK
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    Thank you all for the great suggestions! I know more now about what to do and not to do for next time. I'm typically a landscape shooter, so this is a lot different to me.

    @Ryvax: We got the Ewok costume online at Costume Express.
     

Share This Page