Sure professional photographers may have longer lenses and really expensive cameras…however, here are a few things that anyone can do to improve people pictures!
Typically the most successful portraits are images that highlight the face, and specifically the eyes of the subject. A good goal is to have anyone who looks at the image be immediately drawn to the subjects eyes.
To help highlight this feat, here are 3 very simple tips:
1) Have the subject wear darker clothing..preferably without any text on it. In a picture, the viewer is usually drawn to the lightest part of the picture first…so in the absence of a bright distractions, the focus moves to the face…and eyes!
2) To further direct attention to the face and eyes…move closer! Sure a picture or two of the entire scene, or full length of the person and outfit is nice…but be sure to also get closer and capture a picture with just the head and shoulders filling the frame.
3) Lastly, even though your focus is usually right on your subject, be sure to check the background for distracting elements… Things to look for are very bright colors, reflections, cars, telephone poles, branches…anything that will be noticed in the photograph that distracts from your subjects face. Clean and simple backgrounds are usually best. Painted walls, bed sheets and dark wood are common items that can serve as fantastic backgrounds!
PS – Good luck and have fun!!