Part two – Project 1 – Exercise 2.4
“Find a location with good light for a portrait shot. Place your subject some distance in front of a simple background and select a wide aperture together with a moderately long focal length such as 100mm on a 35mm full-frame camera (about 65mm on a cropped-frame camera). Take a viewpoint about one and a half metres from your subject, allowing you to compose a headshot comfortably within the frame. Focus on the eyes and take the shot.”
I used a Canon 70D and Canon 70-300mm f/4-5.6 lens. It was a bright day so I did not need a tripod and opted to use my camera hand-held and I also used a reflector.
I like a blurred background and out of all the lens I have I prefer this one for portraiture because of the overall look and feel of the images. The model does stand out from the background but I think a different background colour could have improved this shot. Choosing a more contrasting colour to the model’s hair and clothing can improve separation further. Here my location meant that the colours were all quite similar to the model’s own colour palette, however, the lighting of the model’s hair by the sun meant that parts of her outline was been lifted and therefore works nonetheless.
“Longer focal lengths appear to compress space, giving a shallower depth of acceptable sharpness, which is known as depth of field. This makes a short or medium telephoto lens perfect for portraiture: the slight compression of features appears attractive while the shallow depth of field adds intensity to the eyes and ‘lifts’ the subject from the background.”
This completes my submission for Exercise 2.4. You can access Exercise 2.5 here.