Our latest tip can be used in everyday photos using both cellphone, point and shoot, as well as DSLR cameras. David requested that we cover the best way to eliminate harsh shadows. Today’s post covers the topic of lighting and how to eliminate harsh shadows from the sun!
Every so often when a client sees their beautiful portraits they will exclaim:
“How come my photos never look like that?”
“What can I do to make my pictures better?”
Here I want to address that very question with one simple tip: LIGHT. A properly lit image can make a difference between a bad or even mediocre picture to a beautiful portrait.
Since the average person doesn’t carry around a “Power Light 1500R” with them everywhere they go, the next best thing is knowing how to use natural light properly. When you’re at a family function and you’re asked to take a picture – where do you stand the group to have the best light? The myth is to put them directly in the sun so their faces are lit – this is only a good idea if you want everyone to be squinty and blind by the time you take the photo!
Instead of this scenario, try putting the group under a nice big tree with the sun positioned behind them and the big open sky in front of them. Standing under the tree blocks the downward light that causes unflattering shadows on one’s face. Having the sun coming from behind the subjects allows for nice backlight rather than harsh direct light. The most important element of this scenario is the open sky in front of the subjects. This allows for beautiful soft light to reflect on the individual’s faces as well as creating a catch-light in their eyes bringing them to life.
So for your next family gathering or photo adventure, be sure to keep this in mind. You will be shocked as to how big of a difference it really makes!