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Thread: Rules For Portrait Photography

  1. #1

    Default Rules For Portrait Photography

    The rules for capturing portraiture seems so wide that i sometimes get myself confused and so overwhelmed, just in the split of the second to think whether where should i cut of a person's limb, where should i place their eyes, should i include any part of their body to make the picture look more comfortable, etc......, only to let the magical moment fly away.

    I would really appreciate if anyone could please teach me about the basic rules which is good to be followed in order to taking great portrait photos.

    Thanks in advance

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Rules For Portrait Photography

    I think someone should teach you to post into the correct subforum first .

  3. #3

    Default Re: Rules For Portrait Photography

    ask deadpoet....
    头可断,血可流,倩女不可不追求 carpe diem,when in doubt, hoot first,apologise later:p GALLERY

  4. #4
    Moderator catchlights's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rules For Portrait Photography

    one step at a time,

    great master take many years to perfect his craft.


    .
    Shoot to Live, Live to Shoot
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  5. #5

    Default Re: Rules For Portrait Photography

    Quote Originally Posted by mutabor View Post
    I think someone should teach you to post into the correct subforum first .

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Rules For Portrait Photography

    ClubSNAP Photography Forums > Photo Galleries > Portraits and Poses


  7. #7

    Default Re: Rules For Portrait Photography

    Quote Originally Posted by Jix View Post
    ClubSNAP Photography Forums > Photo Galleries > Portraits and Poses

    No la bro... its either:

    1) ClubSNAP Photography Forums > General, Reviews, Tech Talk

    or

    2) ClubSNAP Photography Forums > Newbies Corner


    Cheers and happy shooting, lionel319!
    Last edited by Eric Lee; 13th February 2007 at 12:49 AM.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Rules For Portrait Photography

    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Lee View Post
    No la bro... its either:

    1) ClubSNAP Photography Forums > General, Reviews, Tech Talk

    or

    2) ClubSNAP Photography Forums > Newbies Corner


    Cheers and happy shooting, lionel319!
    Oops. I was highlighting to the TS the 'Photo Galleries'. Meaning he's in the wrong subforum.

  9. #9

    Default Re: Rules For Portrait Photography

    Quote Originally Posted by Jix View Post
    Oops. I was highlighting to the TS the 'Photo Galleries'. Meaning he's in the wrong subforum.
    Oic bro.... hehe... my bad

  10. #10

    Default Re: Rules For Portrait Photography

    Quote Originally Posted by lionel319 View Post
    teach me about the basic rules which is good to be followed in order to taking great portrait photos.
    There are many, many "rules" in photography. And there is no lack of such "rules" in portrait photography, especially with regards to "portrait" photography in CS.

    It would help if you can clarify what you meant by "great portrait photos".

    Some had mentioned that "you can't do without them (make-up artists) if you're into portraiture, unless you want ghostly/ghastly images". And if you read along the portrait subforum, this appears to be one of the "rules" that you cannot violate - "you can't do without them".

    But take a look at this portrait, taken by Steve McCurry



    Would you call this a great portrait? But I do not think a make-up artist made the subject to look this way!

    So how? I can only surmise that those who advocate that MUAs are absolutely necessary have different kinds of portraiture in mind. Whether what they have in mind are "great" or not I have absolutely no idea.
    Last edited by student; 13th February 2007 at 10:42 AM.

  11. #11
    Moderator catchlights's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rules For Portrait Photography

    Quote Originally Posted by student View Post


    agree with student on the make up artist part.

    but for the sake of discussions, everyone please look at this pictures now, tell me how many rules have you spotted, to make this portraits successful?
    Shoot to Live, Live to Shoot
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  12. #12

    Default Re: Rules For Portrait Photography

    Quote Originally Posted by catchlights View Post
    agree with student on the make up artist part.

    but for the sake of discussions, everyone please look at this pictures now, tell me how many rules have you spotted, to make this portraits successful?
    didn't someone once said "rules are meant to be broken"?

  13. #13

    Default Re: Rules For Portrait Photography

    You can get all the 'rules' correct, technically. But what good is a picture if it fails to engage the senses of the viewer in general?

  14. #14

    Default Re: Rules For Portrait Photography

    I can say for portraits, you must ensure that all the elements that you want to show are in the frame, the elements that you want to show blend seamlessly, eyes are in focus, and most important of all, it must be able to engage some feeling in the viewer; will it tell a story or produce emotion? If it dosen't say something emotionally, then the elements must be perfect to at least engage people into saying "wah, so sharp."
    5D MII w/16-35L,Sigma 28-70&Nikkors(35f2,85f1.4,105f2.5,180f2.8ED)

  15. #15
    Moderator catchlights's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rules For Portrait Photography

    When the portrait works, you can look at it again, then you will know how many rules being applied, whether is intentional or unintentional.

    since you guys don't believe in that, than forget what I suggest.
    Shoot to Live, Live to Shoot
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  16. #16
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    Default Re: Rules For Portrait Photography

    Quote Originally Posted by catchlights View Post
    but for the sake of discussions, everyone please look at this pictures now, tell me how many rules have you spotted, to make this portraits successful?
    first and foremost, i am a newbie in portraits. but the pic by Steve McCurry do have a drawing power to me. it makes me what to stare at her eyes, asking myself why she looks so angry, at the same time feeling scare within. I guess a good portraits is probably one that will make you want to take a second look and think.

  17. #17
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    Default Re: Rules For Portrait Photography

    Quote Originally Posted by robertcapa View Post
    didn't someone once said "rules are meant to be broken"?
    You have to have an understanding of the rules in order to break them.

  18. #18

    Default Re: Rules For Portrait Photography

    psssst..... i overhead someone said this about portraiture some time back "Must have beautiful face, else the portrait sure not nice!"


    Quote Originally Posted by lionel319 View Post
    The rules for capturing portraiture seems so wide that i sometimes get myself confused and so overwhelmed, just in the split of the second to think whether where should i cut of a person's limb, where should i place their eyes, should i include any part of their body to make the picture look more comfortable, etc......, only to let the magical moment fly away.

    I would really appreciate if anyone could please teach me about the basic rules which is good to be followed in order to taking great portrait photos.

    Thanks in advance

  19. #19

    Default Re: Rules For Portrait Photography

    Quote Originally Posted by wildstallion View Post
    You have to have an understanding of the rules in order to break them.
    haha - you are right..

    know the rules but also know when to break them..

  20. #20
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    Default Re: Rules For Portrait Photography

    Quote Originally Posted by student View Post
    But take a look at this portrait, taken by Steve McCurry

    A very famous Portrait indeed...

    He went back to look for this afgan gal...

    I simple amaze at this photo when I first saw it on NGC...

    Not sure whether I can get shots like this in my lifetime...

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