Portraits: Four Simple Approaches

Portraits: Four Simple Approaches

I had the chance to do some portraits of some of the talent we had at the LE Weekend Meetup. They were Briana’s dance company and all of them were delightful and beautiful dancers. The folks who came had a blast and I was simply stunned that so many people came so far to hang out with us.

We had photographers from NY / FL ¬†/ WA / CA / KS / TX and other far flung areas… we covered North America pretty well.

More shots from that weekend coming when I get them all in from the folks… wow, it was fun.

The first portrait was of Briana and done as a demonstration for one of the photographers who wanted to understand the large fill card and main light approach.

Briana is lit from the side with a large, 60" umbrella on camera right, in close. To camera left is a very large white fill card. No other lighting mods were used.

I took some of the other dancers to the lobby for a short natural light session. Natural light was my first love in photography, and going back to it is a choice and a joy.

The light in the foyer area was coming through an open door, and filling the bright walls. I used a couple of pieces of fome core for the main light, and set my ISO up to allow a faster shutter speed.

Mikella is lit with two white cards: one directly to camera right and the other from camera left. The catch lights were offered by sunlight on a glass picture frame behind me.

Next up was  Danica. She had this incredible hair and I wanted to get something I was seeing in my head. I moved her quite close to the doorframe for this shot, and used a fome core bounce card for the main light.

The flare gave me the exact look I wanted. A bit on the dreamy side, yet punchy enough to work as a portrait. Yes, Danica has a beautiful smile, but this look just seems so right.

Miranda was sitting in the chairs on one of the walls of the foyer, and I simply loved the look. Placing her low in the frame gives the image some dynamic. At least, I like it and it is more a stylistic way I like to shoot these days.

Miranda was lit by only natural light - not even a fill card. I had to keep her head turned away from the door so there wouldn't be bright edges on her cheeks and nose.

It is always fun to get a chance to shoot some portraits. Between all the goings on that day, it was a welcome respite for me.

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About 

I am in love with light.

Also known as Don Giannatti, photography has been the focus of my life for most of my adult years. I have written three books for Amherst Media (available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble: keyword 'don giannatti'. Lighting Essentials is my flagship blog and ezine with a slightly different slant than most photography related blogs. If you are interested in becoming a better photographer, check out www.project52.org. Thanks for visiting.

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