Photography by Jim Doty

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Simple Flash Portraits

You have been asked to do a portrait inside. What do you do? Most of what you read in Simple Portraits (outside) applies here.  Use flash as the main light source, get close, use short telephoto lens, simplify the  background.

Posing can be a problem. Having people stand and stare at the camera often results in less than satisfying poses.

Try this simple idea.  If the person is wearing pants or slacks, have them straddle a chair backwards and put their arms on the back of the chair. This puts the person more at ease. Take the photo from a little above head height.

If the perspon is wearing a dress, have them sit side saddle and put their arms on part of the back of the chair. Giving a person something to do with their arms and hands puts them more at ease in front of the camera and they look more natural.

In the photo above, Kaylyn is straddling a chair, and leaning against the back of the chair. The photo is closely cropped so you don't see her arms. There is a Christmas tree behind her, creating the out of focus lights. 

July 3, 2000

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