Tuesday Photo Tip – Environmental Portaits – 2

Last week’s post discussed “environmental portraiture”. In today’s post we’d like to expand on that a bit with a few more examples. We really enjoy working outdoors capturing personal, environmental portraits. Follow these tips and guidlines while you  practice. Your confidence will grow along with your abilities.

We ended last week’s post talking about simple backgrounds that “tell the story” without distracting from the portrait. The engagement photos below demonstrate telling a story and the use of a simple background. The sign posts tell the story of a trip to the Monarch Beach Resort in Laguna Niguel; the fence is a simple background that sets off the subjects very nicely.

Our engagement photo sessions are so much fun – we always photograph at interesting locations such as the beach. Once again, notice how the scene tells a story (walk on the beach) while the high key background draws the eye to the subject and includes no distracting elements.

Here are a few more examples from the same fun engagement shoot at Laguna Beach. The beach location is apparent, the sunset  adds beauty and the simple tile background keeps the focus on the couple.

These aspects of environmental portraiture are important for family portraits as well. We love to create portraits for families at locations they choose. Here’s an example of a youngster exploring a local garden the family visits regularly. Notice the direction of the sun and the hair light it produces helping separate the youngster from the background. When you try this technique be sure to use fill flash – read the earlier post for tips & simple techniques.

The family below owns a winery and chose to have their portraits taken on the property.

Here are some more portraits that were taken at locations chosen by the client.

Telling a story can involve showing people enjoying their hobbies (ball room dancing) or with their professional gear (photographer).

Creating pleasing portraits in the great outdoors requires considerations beyond simple backgrounds that we’ve covered in earlier posts. The posts discussing good light and fill flash are especially relevant. Take a minute to review those and then go out and practice your environmental portraiture. Everyone likes to have their picture taken in pleasant surroundings. With a little practice you’ll be the go-to guy/gal for photos at family events.

Feel free to comment or show off some of your own environmental portraits. In the meantime, stay tuned because more Tuesday Photo Tips are right around the corner. Better yet – be updated automatically by “friending” our Facebook site.

PS - This is one of dozens of photo tips in our continuing Tuesday Photo Tips series of posts. There  are other resource articles on our site you may enjoy covering basic and more advanced photography topics. There are also tips covering topics such as preparing for family or infant/child portrait sessions. If you would like a topic covered just jot it down in a comment or send us a note.

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