Portraiture Tips and Tricks - Nicole Hirsch Photography Events

Portraiture Tips and Tricks

Clothing and Accessories

I always start by telling my clients to be comfortable in their clothing. Choose clothing that shows your personality, and bring a change of clothes or two in case you would like different looks during the shoot. Layering and use of multiple accessories in different photos is a great way to change up your look without bringing an entirely new outfit. Comfortable shoes are a must, just remember that they will be in your photos. 


A great group portrait foundation is choosing outfits that compliment while not matching. Start with a base one or two colors (more for larger groups) and use those colors either as the base of an outfit, and the accent for another. Lay the clothes out on the bed or floor together to get a good sense of how they will look together, like you might do with your own outfit while planning. Chose accessories that compliment without being too chunky or heavy, and remember, we can always change these up during the shoot, so bring a bag with extras if you want variation. 


If you are planning the photos to be hung in a specific place in your home, you may want to coordinate your clothing choices with the palette used in that room. This is not a necessary plan for every shoot, but may be important if you wish to display the photos as a major piece in the room. 


If you are planning a Maternity shoot, there are a few items to consider when choosing your outfits and accessories, again I must say first and foremost, be comfortable. Maxi dresses provide comfort for your shoot while allowing the flowing material to hide some areas while accentuating your baby bump. Solid colors and textured clothing are a great way to look fabulous and allow the photos to show off your baby belly. If you are comfortable in clothing that shows off your curves, go for it!  Choose clothing that reflects your personality, use accessories like belts, light jewelry, hats, and comfortable footwear. 


If you have some ideas but are not sure, feel free to message me some photos of the clothing you would like to use and accessories you might consider. Pinterest and Google Images search are also good visual aids for selecting color schemes and ideas for accessories. 


Props

Props are a fun way to make a basic portrait more interactive. They show personality that doesn't necessarily come through in facial expressions and poses, and transform an ordinary space. If you are bringing props, or would like suggestions specific to your shoot, I would love to know ahead of time so we can build the props into the shoot ideas. 

Here are some ideas for props in various shoot types:

Framed sonograms, framed photos of younger selves

Favorite blankets (large for sitting on or small), toys, books

Instruments

Sports uniforms, equipment

Baby shoes, first toy, special baby gift

Chair, trunk, etc for sitting on (can often be rented from antique or second hand store)


Hair and Makeup

A natural hairstyle, or something that fits with your look, is best to go with. Using aerosol hairspray on the top and sides of your do will help prevent fly aways that often may not be photoshopped out due to background.  Bring a brush/comb, hair tie,  and spray with you in case you would like to touch up or change your style due to wind. 


Natural makeup, or a look that is typical to you is best for your portraits. It is not necessary for your makeup to punch to be seen in the portraits. Bring some makeup for touch ups during your shoot, for instance lipstick or gloss.


Newborn Shoots

Special outfits and props are a very personal choice for newborn shoots, therefore I do not provide most of the items for a shoot, however I do have a few blankets, fabrics, and vinyl floor/background choices for the shoot. We will be shooting on location, so I will be talking with you ahead of time about outfits and props you will be bringing so that I can plan ahead. 


Here are a few ideas for places to search for outfits and props:

Etsy is a great place to look for special outfits for your shoot, this is a sample search on Etsy for Newborn Photo Outfit https://www.etsy.com/market/newborn_photo_outfit.

Pinterest is also a great resource for deciding what kind of shoot you would like and finding outfits and props, here is a link to a Pinterest search for Newborn Photo Outfits https://www.pinterest.com/explore/newborn-photo-outfits/?lp=true. Another great thing about Pinterest is that you can create a board of your favorite ideas and share it with me.


Please share with me any outfits or props you would like to use in the shoot so that I may plan ahead. 

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