To a portrait photographer, lighting is everything. Have dull or inadequate light during your portrait photography session and you’ll be disappointed with the end product. Yes, lighting determines the brightness or darkness of your portrait, but besides this, lighting is good for many things. It determines the mood, tone, and atmosphere of your portrait. If you want to tell an unforgettable story with your subject’s portrait, you’ll need to be able to manipulate light correctly. Doing this will help you get the best texture, shades of color and luminosity that highlights your subjects in an intriguing way. Here is how I create stylized portrait photograph of my subjects’ using bright lighting.
Light position is everything
As a professional Las Vegas family portrait photographer, I can tell you that light positioning can make or mar your portrait, that’s why you need to get it right in the first place. More so, the source of your light plays a huge role on how it falls on your subject. Any light source that originates from behind your camera and pointing directly towards your subject produces a flat lighting that will affect your portrait quality. That’s not all, it will also cause deep shadows to fall in the background of your image. And if you have been into photography for a while, you’ll agree that this will affect the quality of your image. To this end, I have found side lighting absolutely amazing in this regard. Side lighting produces better lighting and casts partial shadows which gives your shoot a more dramatic and realistic look. In essence, if you get your light positioning right, you’ll be sure that your portrait will turn out great.
Leverage shaping Light
Shaping lights are awesome if you really want to be able to capture a defining portrait of your subject. More so, shaping light acts as a diffuser that helps reduce harsh shadows and glare. Besides this, it reduces blemishes on your subject and helps you capture a great image. Since I have been experimenting with shaping light, I have discovered that it helps tweak my artificial light, giving it a softer and natural looking result. For portrait photographers just starting out, there are lots of intriguing ways to diffuse light, I have found using umbrellas, sheer heatproof material and softboxes are very helpful.
Learn to manipulate your light
If you want to be able to capture portraits that you’ll be proud of, then you must learn to manipulate lighting. I’m sure by now you know that shooting a perfect portrait will not be possible without proper lighting. Thankfully, this isn’t so difficult to do. With diffusers and reflectors, you can easily manipulate light to fall on specific areas you think will highlight your image properly. I have done this with lots of my subject and the result is simply out of this world. You too can easily do this by easily manipulating your lights. So, go out there and get some light diffusers and start shooting great portraits right away.