Photo hints

The best portraits come from good photographs.

Follow these hints to get the best results:

  • avoid flash (it creates harsh lighting, red-eye, loss of 3d effect ....)
  • avoid direct strong sunlight (shadows can appear too black) - the best light is often hazy cloud cover, which tends to produce the most faithful colour.
  • side lighting from an adjacent window can be effective.
  • avoid wide-angle lenses (on cheap digital and 35mm cameras). These invariably distort the image.
  • take the photo at, or just above the subject's eye-level.
  • it is often good to have the subject looking slightly away from the camera - A friend next to you could attract a pet's attention to one side.
  • It is usually best not to have the subject's shoulders 'square on' to the camera. Try seating them at a slight angle.
  • take several pictures - in other lighting (even one in strong sunlight!). This helps to ascertain eye and coat colour (pets!) accurately.In some circumstances (obituaries, or surprise gifts), where you only possess a few previously taken (and perhaps, small) photos, it is still possible to produce a good portrait. Please don't hesitate to ask me if what you have is usable!