A dabble in portraits

Apart from photographing my children and grandchildren, I have done very little portrait work.  This really stems from the fact that I haven’t had any willing models.  I was, therefore, very pleased when my friend and neighbour asked me whether I could take some photos of her daughter, dressed for her school prom this summer.  I did, however, say that I couldn’t guarantee the results.

Well, for obvious reasons, I don’t have a studio or any studio lighting.  The weather couldn’t be guaranteed for outside shots.  In fact, at the appointed time it was windy and the sun was potentially harsh, although it did go in at times.  Luckily, my neighbour had a bright and fairly large breakfast room extension to her kitchen, and with a little re-arrangement of furniture and the dogs, we were able to use that space.  We just needed the sun to disappear for a while.

The shoot was not without some minor hitches and my lack of experience meant that we were in danger of running out of time.  However, I did learn a fair bit about getting the right pose from the model.  Sadly some of this was not until we had finished!

I took a lot of images of the family, and of Jess alone.  Some of these were not great because I didn’t notice some elements of posture as the shutter opened.  I think I can do better in the future having learned from these mistakes.  I managed to give them about 30 images for the family album.

Luckily though, Jess is naturally photogenic and I did get a few shots that I was reasonably happy with.  A couple of these are shown below.  Both were taken with natural light.

Jess 2

This on was converted to mono in order to remove some of the distraction of the background and floor.

Jess 1

As can be seen, there was a problem with her hair which should have been sorted at the time and there are other things that I would have liked to change a bit, but overall I enjoyed my first real attempt at taking portrait photographs.  One thing is for sure, and that is that Jess makes a great model and I would like to do some more work with her if she agrees.

But, I’ll never try to do it as a business!


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