Getting Started as a Portrait Photographer – Tips You Need

portrait photographyThere are several different types of photography businesses that you can start, one of which is portrait photography. This is a line of work where you are able to take very distinctive photographs of people, usually with a basic backdrop that allows the viewer to focus on their expression. This type of photography has a lot to do with mood, the feelings that are conveyed through the people that you are taking a picture of. They can dress up for these photographs, but what is most important of all, is the lighting and the expressions that you capture that can make them absolutely unique. You can start this type of business if you have a unique eye for taking photos of people. Let’s go over the basics of this type of photography, and then how to start this type of business.

What Is Portrait Photography?

This initially developed back in the nineteenth century, and has advanced to the different types of equipment that we have available today. In the past, long exposure times were often required to get the proper lighting, that was until the advent of three-point lighting systems. This is one of the most basic lighting setups that is done for this type of photography, typically accomplished within a studio. This allows the photographer reading to have full control of the lights and shadows which can literally change the way a picture is perceived, and also enhance the person being photographed. It allows a three-dimensional aspect to be brought out, targeting very subtle features. These lights are divided up into the key light, which is the main light, as well as the fill in an accent light which all work together to create the best effect.

Different Types of Lighting

Aside from three-point lighting, there are many other kinds including butterfly lighting which only uses two separate light sources. There is one right in front of the subject, and one off to the side, enhancing overall depth perception. Soft shadows can be created very easily using this set up, and is often seen in very famous photographs that have been taken. In addition to using the right type of lighting, there are also certain styles and approaches that must be used to get the best pictures.

Different Styles of Portrait Photography

There are quite a few styles that are used today, often referred to as approaches. These include environmental, creative, candid and what is called the constructionist approach which allows the picture to construct an idea. In regard to equipment, it is important to have the proper camera and also lenses that can capture light properly, something that technology has improved upon significantly over the years. Whether you decide to do traditional portraits, modern or even senior portraits, you can use all of these in your portfolio once you decide to get started with your portrait photography business.

How To Start Your Business

All businesses begin with creating an official business, filing the proper documentation as a sole proprietorship, partnership, LLC or even a corporation. Most people that do portrait photography file as a sole proprietorship, unless of course there are partners involved or if it is going to be a large-scale business, LLC is a common choice. You need a bank account by which to receive payments, and also file your taxes every year. Finally, you need to have the latest photography equipment, as well as a studio for people to come to so that you can create the proper lighting and setting.

Start Advertising

Once you have set everything up, and you start to advertise, you should direct people either to your physical studio or a website where they can see what type of work you are capable of doing. Once you have several clients, and testimonials from these individuals which are positive, you will start to see your business grow. You can advertise in the classifieds, online, and word-of-mouth recommendations also workout very well. Whether you are in a large or small area, and even if you only have a little bit of experience in this industry, you should be able to create a thriving portrait photography business that will generate a good income.