Sunny Day Portraits

Back around the beginning of the year I decided to run a little Facebook special and do some small sessions to help build my photography portfolio. The sessions were all grabbed within just a few minutes, which I found both encouraging and terrifying, and most of them were scheduled to be done in the month of April.

My past few weekends have been full of portrait sessions and I have one more coming up before the end of the month. What’s been so funny about all this taking off is how busy it’s made me — I feel like I’m doing more than I ever did when I was working a traditional 8-5 job. The best part is doing what I want. I never knew how fun that would be!

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Now, sunny days. They can sure be a challenge when you’re trying to take someone’s photo. I know that before I learned much about photography it seemed like a bright, blue sky day was the best. There are times for it, and the time of day you’re shooting makes quite a bit of difference, but I am learning to appreciate a nice overcast day. It makes for some very interesting light when you’re focusing on faces (the good kind of interesting).

We shot my cousin’s second round of senior portraits on a sunny afternoon that quickly turned overcast and gray. There was still enough light to make decent photos, but not so much that it was bright and harsh. We started around 4 p.m. and wandered around for about 2 hours.

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Now, Paula’s family was a little more challenging. It was the middle of the afternoon and the day (which was forecasted to be stormy — thank goodness it held off!) was extremely bright and hot. The kids did very well the whole time and I think I might have had it easy for my first time photographing small children. They were well-behaved and cooperative. Not at all what I remember my brothers, specifically the youngest, being like whenever we would have a photo taken.

The light was much brighter than what I usually shoot in — we’re talking blazing. Thankfully I was able to get creative in some shaded areas (the photo above wasn’t one of those shady areas) and we got a number of good shots. Another thing — a few shots that might not have looked so great in full color did turn out to be quite striking in black and white, all thanks to that bright sun.

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4 Responses to Sunny Day Portraits

  1. misti says:

    I think your sunny day photo on the bottom would have worked well had you only been shooting her face, zoomed and cropped in on her face starting at her sleeve line. I bet if you cropped it in PS and did a bit of touching up with the light there that would be a great portrait on its own. Her hair is good there too.

    Sunny days do stink!

  2. Urban Wife says:

    So glad to hear your photography venture is going well!

  3. I love the backgrounds you used in these shots, Elizabeth! (Interesting angles and lines, without competing with the subjects.) I hear ya on the blazing OK sun… it’s challenging to take food shots outdoors, too. Congratulations on your business taking off — I can “see” why!

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