Improve your family portrait skills

contemporary family portraits: tips and techniques

contemporary family portraits: tips and techniques

Everything you need to know for contemporary family portraits

There’s lots to consider when taking your family pictures, from the technology you’re using to how the people involved react. By using some simple tricks in composition and preparation, and by keeping the children entertained, you can be sure that you’ve got all you need to take some really good family photos.

1. Spare batteries
Shooting flashguns at 1/4 of their full power really drains the batteries, so always have plenty of spares to hand. The recycle times between each shot also become a lot longer the more exhausted the batteries become, so shots may be missed if you shoot too quickly.

2. Simple backgrounds
Using a plain throw or bed sheet as a backdrop on your sofa means you can achieve a clean image that doesn’t have any background or foreground distractions. Consider using black material for an effective backdrop for mono portraits.

3. Keep the kids entertained
When photographing kids, you must remember that they have a much shorter attention span than adults. To keep them interested in having their pics taken, let them view the shots on your LCD.

4. Change poses
Keep the shoot flowing well by varying the poses. Not only to get different shots but also so that the subjects don’t lose interest and get bored with the same poses.

5. Crop tight
Don’t be afraid to crop tight. Even going as far as cropping the forehead and chin off a face, and leaving a shot just of the subject’s main features can have impact. By using a zoom lens such as an 18-105mm you can get both the wide shot and a close up.

Interaction with kids between shots is just as important as it is when pressing the shutter.