3 Tips for Photographing People

I’ll admit it…I’ve always been better at photographing inanimate objects. There’s no, “Hey! Look over here!” or “Maybe turn your head slightly to the left”. Or my favorite, “Kay, hold still right there. Now, just imagine you’re weightless, in the middle of the ocean, surrounded by tiny little seahorses.” (Napolean Dynamite? Anyone?).

Lately, however, I’ve had a strong desire to hone my skills for photographing people. Here are a few tips I’ve found along the way.

  1. Try different angles.
    The standard portrait photo with everyone looking straight at the camera bores me. (Sorry for those of you who love those shots!) Different angles bring a more natural feel to human photos. Here’s one I did of My Stronger Half.
    My Stronger Half
  2. Look for natural human emotion.
    My favorite photos are those that catch a raw emotion. I try to photograph subjects while they’re preoccupied with something else, because the photo comes out much more natural. Here’s another shot of My Stronger Half (same moment as above). Even though he’s looking at the camera, you can tell he’s thinking about something else.
  3. Use a shallow depth of field.
    Backgrounds can sometimes take the focus off your main subject. I like to use a shallow depth of field to make sure this doesn’t happen. In the photo below, I used an f-stop of 3.8 on my niece. Even the doll she’s holding is slightly blurred, so your eye automatically goes to those big blues.
    Using a Shallow Depth of Field

Have you found any other helpful tips for photographing people? Have a shot you want to share? Comment below!


About Wendy from Suburban Misfit

Social Media Manager by day; blogger and amateur photographer by night.
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One Response to 3 Tips for Photographing People

  1. Robin says:

    I’ve never been particularly good at photographing people, but those photos that did turn out well usually involved one of your three tips. I really don’t like posed shots of people at all (although I think it works well for fruit and such, as in still life photography).

    I love that first shot. The angle is wonderful. And your niece is adorable! Look at those big, beautiful, blue eyes!

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