Wednesday, July 6, 2011
Watch for portrait moments
Fiona had had a big day: A long stroll through the neighbourhood, an action-filled visit to the park, a good dinner with her favourite vegetable — broccoli. Now, feeling a little sleepy, she plopped down on the loveseat in front of the television for a little quiet time.
This image is almost a straight jpeg from my Canon PowerShot S90. The endpoints have been set and the edges burned down but generally this picture required very little enhancement. This image hasn't even been hit with any extra saturation.
The light is good in this room. There are two windows: One behind her illuminating her hair and one off to the side giving the nice, soft portrait lighting. The white ceiling reflects nice clean light onto the subject.
If I had a DSLR I would use a lens in the 85mm to 105mm range and try and shoot with the lens as wide open as possible. Something like f/2.8 or f/4.0 would be good. The fast f/stop minimizes the depth of field, allows for a lower ISO setting and a higher shutter speed. A win, win, win proposition.
If your camera has a portrait setting, try that. You might find it softens the subject a bit much but try it; Find out whether or not you like the effect.
When composing your shot, if you have the person looking off to the side as I do, try and leave a little extra space on the side of the image where they are looking. Your picture will feel better balanced.
With my Canon PowerShot S90, I must confess, I simply picked up the camera, composed my image and shot.