As one of the most common types of photography, portrait photography is a huge field with a lot of moving parts. The definition for this form of photography being that portrait photos focus on a person’s face – the main focus of portraits. A portrait doesn’t necessarily have a set pattern. There is no one way to define the portrait for someone. Some photographers prefer candid shots while other photographers work with people in studios to get a clean, polished photo. If you’re interested in learning more about what portrait photography is then check out some of the facts and guidelines below to learn more the art form.
No one size fits all and the same goes for portraits. While the most popular type of portrait is the posed, studio portrait, more candid shots are quickly becoming the shot of choice for many clients. Portrait types come in a lot of different forms. There are environment shots where the model is in their element – say at work or with family members at home. Glamour portraits are often filled with the glitz and glam of Hollywood. There are countless spins on traditional portraitures.
There is no true location for portrait photographers to shoot in. Some stuck to the studio, many prefer to be inside where the lighting can be manipulated perfectly, and other photographers love to be out and about shooting with natural lighting around. Depending on what your model is looking for, portrait photography isn’t a one-place type of form. So long as you have an experienced photographer with an adept grasp of how to shoot outdoors, the possibilities are endless.
While many photographers can quickly snap a portrait for most people, there is a bit of challenge thrown in when a photographer truly wants to make an impact. Portraitures are known to be some of the most inspiring pieces of art in the world. A quick snapshot of someone across the globe can have a huge impact in the world of photography. Think of Steve McCurry’s “Green Eyes” photo, Yousuf Karsh’s shot of a grumpy Winston Churchill – upset that Karsh took his cigar away -, and the infamous Migrant Mother shot captured by Dorothea Lange. The challenge of any portraiture is to capture something of silent value.
There are as many reasons to take a portrait as there are types of portraits. Look on the walls of ancient castles and you’ll find portraits of nobility in their finest clothing with prized possessions surrounding them. Portraits have been around for as long as artists have been painting and drawing. The reason for portrait photography is to capture the image of someone for one reason or another. Portraits can capture a family in play, the birth of a child, politicians, leaders, grief, triumph, and a host of other human emotions. It allows the audience to connect with an image almost immediately.