First Family Photo shoot Please help

Discussion in 'The Aspiring Professionals Forum' started by sopheachoun56, Oct 19, 2015.

  1. sopheachoun56

    sopheachoun56 TPF Noob!

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    Hi Fellow Photographers,

    I am finally entering the realm of shooting family portraits.I must say I am nervous to say the least. I have been more of a landscape photographer, I am not a professional. A few friends have approached me and asked to do a family photo shoot for them. It is something I want to learn so I figure the best way to start is to just go out and start shooting.

    I have a few questions in mind I am hoping some of the pros on here can help guide me through my first family photo shoot. Keep in mind the shoot will be outdoors.

    Is it OK to shoot during mid day when the sun is up and high?

    What kind of lighting equipments are recommended? (Reflectors, Flash, etc.) Since it will be outdoors i will want the least equipments as possible.

    Any extra tips would be greatly appreciated.

    Thank you all in advance for your help. I look forward to all the great tips and information.


     
  2. The_Traveler

    The_Traveler Completely Counter-dependent Supporting Member

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    No, avoid that at all costs.

    There is no way to write enough to get you to the point that you will be ready because it isn't equipment or 'tips', it is experience and knowledge and judgement.
     
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  3. tirediron

    tirediron Watch the Birdy! Staff Member Supporting Member

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    You are essentially asking; "In one post, how do I become a photographer?". Thousands of books comprised of millions of pages have been written on the topic. As Lew indicated, shooting at mid-day is less than desirable. It's do-able, but requires a lot of extra gear to do properly (lights, reflectors, scrims/diffusers). The simple fact is, you need to know the answers to these questions before you do your first shoot. You need to have at least a basic understanding of how to control/shape light, how to pose individuals and groups and what equipment is required in each situation. Spend a few weeks studying books, videos, etc, then enlist family/friends as guinea pigs and practice. Try the different techniques you've been reading about and see how things work. Practice is essential, but until you've got at least a basic understanding of the fundamentals you have nothing to practice.
     
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  4. Derrel

    Derrel Mr. Rain Cloud

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    I will boil this down to the simplest thing you can possibly do, without a lot of experience. FInd a location that has a good-sized area of open shade. Meaning a big place, perhaps a 40x100 foot area or larger, which is shaded by something BIG, like a grove of trees, or two large houses, or a large ocean bluff...a large area, which is NOT in direct sunlight, but which is close to an area lighted by direct sun rays. Place your people in the shade, close to the edge between the shaded area, and the sun-lighted area, with their eyes facing toward the sunlit direction, which will give you large, big eye catchlights.

    THis is very different from being in deep, dark shade....you are looking for an area of what is called open shade. It is the easiest outdoor lighting for the beginner to work with, and the experienced shooter can make absolutely gorgeous photos using this type of light.

    In a small area, you will find this lighting at say, the outer periphery of the shadow of an oak tree, or at the end of an alleyway in a city, or at the very front edge of a stadium overhang at a fairgrounds or high-school track+ football field stadium.

    Meter by coming close to the faces of the people, and using center-weighted metering, measure the light falling on the cheek of a person, making sure not to cast any shadow from your body.
     
  5. JacaRanda

    JacaRanda Hobbyist Birdographer

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  6. SquarePeg

    SquarePeg hear me roar Staff Member Supporting Member

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    No, not user error. You posted this link in the other absolute beginner asking for tips on first family shoot thread.
     
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  7. JacaRanda

    JacaRanda Hobbyist Birdographer

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    Oh thank you. Thought I was going crazy or did something illegal :)
     
  8. sopheachoun56

    sopheachoun56 TPF Noob!

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    Thank you for the insight, I really appreciate it.
     
  9. sopheachoun56

    sopheachoun56 TPF Noob!

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    Awesome. These are the kind of tips that'll help me out big time. Everything is a learning experience, thank you for all your input and time.
     
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  10. sopheachoun56

    sopheachoun56 TPF Noob!

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    I thought this was a community for people to come together for the love of one thing " Photography" wether beginners or pro. I didn't realize you have to be a professional to ask questions.

    Grow up man, your condescending remarks are childish. If you're an adult I really feel sorry for you.
     
  11. NancyMoranG

    NancyMoranG Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    We are a community FULL of great information. Stick with it Sopheachoun56 and you will benefit from the Forum.
    Both of the people who responded here are really great so don't let a first comment turn you off.
    We are just like the real world.....lots of personalities.
    Welcome.

    I can't help as I do not do this type of photography....
     
  12. SquarePeg

    SquarePeg hear me roar Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Sorry if I offended you. It wasn't anything directed at you personally. If you hang around here for any length of time, you will see a lot of posts from people who are charging people for sessions then coming on here asking pretty basic questions. Again, it was meant as a joke about JacaRanda's user error remark, not as a snarky comment towards you.
     
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