10 Great Tips to Improve your Portrait Photography

Posted on: June 27, 2019


Portrait photography can be an interesting subject, but it can also be challenging to perfect. Many people spend years in the field before they can take professional portrait photos. But you shouldn’t have such a hard time learning this skill. Try to use these tips to shorten your learning curve:

1. Create a Portrait Composition

The composition can separate a good portrait from a poor one. You can develop an excellent composition by trying different angles and zooming in and out. Be sure to practise when doing casual photography and not when working professionally.

2. Create a Blurry Background

The point here is to make the viewer focus on the main subject. You can do this by turning the camera to Aperture Priority mode and increasing the aperture size on your lens.

3. Balance the Portrait

For the best picture, the person’s eyes should be in the upper third of the frame. They should also be looking directly into the camera.

4. Select the Lens Carefully

There are many lenses you can use for portrait photography. The 50-mm lens can be great for sharp pictures, but you can’t zoom in with it. You simply have to move closer or further away from the subject to get the right size. The 18-mm lens can be ideal for group photos. Still, you will need to move further from the subject to get the perfect fit. If you want to take pictures from a distance, you can get a 70 to 210 mm lens as they allow you to zoom well into the subjects.

5. Offer Some Poses

Different poses will be suitable for different settings. A pose ideal for a graduation event may not be appropriate for a party. You can create a list of different poses and advice your subjects on which one they should choose.

6. Lighting

Inexperienced photographers will find it best to use natural lighting. It is advisable to avoid direct sunlight as it can create shadows and destroy the picture. If you have to take the photos during the day, you can use flashes or even create an artificial environment. Cloudy days are the best to take portrait photos in natural settings.

7. Don’t Compress the Image

Raw pictures may take up large amounts of space, but they help you preserve all the elements of the photo. In raw format, you will be able to edit the file without messing up its quality. Similarly, the printed image will end up looking great if the picture is stored in its raw format.

8. Use Photo Editing Software

Technology has made it possible for people to edit photos on their computers. With software like photoshop, you will be able to correct any flaws on the picture.

9. Make Your Subjects Relax

A portrait picture will only look good if the subjects can pose in a relaxed state. Getting your subjects to relax can be a challenge, especially when dealing with children. You should learn some simple ways of getting them to sit still for the session.

10. Keep Learning

Photography is a skill that takes time to build. You should take the time to learn about the tactics used by some of the best photographers and try to employ them.


Portrait photography can be complicated, but if you put in the time and effort, you can be sure to grasp it. You can apply the tips above to improve your skill. If necessary, you can take extra classes and learn more about the subject. If you want professional photography services for an event or for casual purposes, you can contact Imagine Contemporary Portraits for some great shots.