Portrait photography is not as easy as you might think. You don’t just step into the camera field of view with your natural look and expect Photoshop to do all the wonders. That’s why some photographers hire stylists. Look at stunning portraits of models posing for magazines. They all look fabulous! Now let’s look at some tips that will help you make wonderful pictures that will make you proud.
10 Must know tips for amazing pictures:
1. No glitters
Portraits, whether taken in a studio or outdoors, usually involve flash or reflectors, which means that light will bounce off your face. The mistake is to use glitters, shimmers or sparkles. These things reflect light so much, that they create an unflattering glow on your face. That may be great for some desired effects for artistic fashion photo-shoots, but it’s usually not appropriate for usual pictures. The solution is to apply matte, subtle makeup products and don’t forget to start with the primer.
2. Put on make-up in natural day light
Outdoor light, even the light coming from the window, reveals the natural color of your skin and genuine colors of your makeup. Be careful when applying makeup in the studio, where lights give everything a yellow cast. This can cause your makeup to look different when you go outdoors or move into a room with different lighting. Also, keep in mind that dim indoor lighting can prompt you to apply heavier makeup than necessary.
3. Apply concealer
The last thing you want to see in photos are blemishes and dark circles under eyes. It’s easier to hide them with a concealer before the photo shoot, than to correct them during post-processing. However, careless applications of concealer can lead to unattractive and unnaturally looking areas on your face, which can especially be visible in portraits, which can also demand extra work in post-processing. Apply your concealer sparingly, blend it well and use it only on the areas of your face where you need it.
4. Darken those eye lids and lashes
Experience tells us that eyes without any make up can make boring and lifeless portraits. The eyes are the focal points of all portraits. Thus, it makes sense to flatter your eyes with black liner and mascara. Black is basic. It creates a bright contrast between your eyes and the rest of your face and it makes them stand out.
5. Put on false lashes
Long eyelashes look great in photos. If you’re in for artistic and dramatic portraits, go for even more dramatic false eyelashes. They will make your eyes more expressive and even define these photographic focal points even more than what mascara can do.
6. Add color to your cheeks
Unless you have prominent cheek bones that look great without blush, you should seriously consider applying color to your cheeks. This adds definition and glow to the otherwise pale face. Every female model has had blush on her face. Together with eye makeup, blush can help creates fantastic and beautiful shots.
7. Never skip on lipstick
Aside from your eyes, your lips serve as another attraction in your portraits that draw viewers. But you don’t want to pick the wrong lipstick color. Remember that the lips are naturally just a few shades away from the rest of your face. Without any color, your lips will look like a barren and dry land that doesn’t belong to the picture. If you don’t like to take chances, go for red. You can’t go wrong with red lipstick.
8. Be careful with eyeshadows and highlights
Most fashion photographers advise against putting eyeshadows under the eyes, and a lot of photographers edit out unflattering shadows on their models’ faces. Shadows across the face and under the chin are a no-no in portraits, unless if certain dramatic results are opted for. Shadows defeat the purpose of applying makeup or using reflectors.
The color you apply under the cheeks should be about a shade or two darker than your natural skin color. Anything that’s too dark can make your face appear stark with unflattering, hollow cheeks. Use lighter tones on the bridge of your nose, the forehead and tops of your cheek bones.
9. Get rid of eye redness
Bloodshot eyes can destroy a portrait regardless of the make-up or lighting. Applying eye drops can reduce eye redness and make your eyes look fresher.
10. Do the test shots
You really wouldn’t know how you look until you take pictures of yourself. Take that picture with your camera or phone. See how you look. If you have the luxury of time in the studio, you can do test shots after the makeover and then make adjustments on the makeup after seeing the photos. That’s how pros do it.