Studio Portrait Photography Of Children And Babies

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  • STUDIO PORTRAIT PHOTOGRAPHY

    CHILDREN AND BABIESofThird Edition

    MARILYN SHOLINAmherst MediaPUBLISHER OF PHOTOGRAPHY BOOKS

  • Copyright 2008 by Marilyn Sholin.All photographs by the author unless otherwise noted.All rights reserved.

    Published by:Amherst Media, Inc.P.O. Box 586Buffalo, N.Y. 14226Fax: 716-874-4508www.AmherstMedia.com

    Publisher: Craig AlesseSenior Editor/Production Manager: Michelle PerkinsAssistant Editor: Barbara A. Lynch-JohntEditorial Assistant: Artie VanderpoolEditorial Assistant: Carey Maines

    ISBN-13: 978-1-58428-212-9Library of Congress Control Number: 2007926860Printed in Korea.10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1

    No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored, or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, me-chanical, photocopied, recorded or otherwise, without prior written consent from the publisher.

    Notice of Disclaimer: The information contained in this book is based on the authors experience and opinions.The author and publisher will not be held liable for the use or misuse of the information in this book.

    SPECIAL THANKSSpecial thanks to all my clients who let me into their lives and have shared their chil-dren and families with me. Your children are all a part of my family.

    DEDICATIONThis book is especially dedicated to the many people who are no longer with me. I knowthey are all reading the book up there and smiling down on me. I feel their presence.This book is dedicated also to Michael, with love. I couldnt survive without your love

    and laughter to keep me sane.

  • CONTENTS 3

    About the Author . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .5Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .6

    1. THE CHILD-FRIENDLY STUDIO . . . . . . . . . . . . . .9First Impressions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .10Your Appearance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .10Toys . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .10Furnishings . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .12Overcoming Shyness . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .12

    Your Camera Room . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .13Conclusion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .15

    2. WHOS THE BOSS HERE? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .17Newborn to Six Months . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .18Seven Months to Thirteen Months . . . . . . . . . . .23Fourteen Months to Eighteen Months . . . . . . . .25Nineteen Months to Three Years . . . . . . . . . . . . .27Four Years to Six Years . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .29Older Sibling Syndrome . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .31A Word About Moms . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .32Conclusion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .33

    3. A TYPICAL PORTRAIT SITTING . . . . . . . . . . . . .34Clothing Consultation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .34What Works? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .36Keep it Simple . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .37The Session . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .40Clothing Evaluation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .40Setup . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .41Full-Length Portraits . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .41Close-ups . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .41

    Final Viewing Appointment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .42Conclusion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .43

    4. CAMERAS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .44Digital Cameras . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .44

    Megapixels and Resolution . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .44Burst Rate . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .46Shutter Lag . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .46CCD vs. CMOS Sensors . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .46Digital Storage Media . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .49

    Image File Formats . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .49TIFF . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .50JPEG . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .50RAW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .51

    Lenses . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .51Minimum Camera and Lens Requirements . . . . .51

    CONTENTS

  • 4 STUDIO PORTRAIT PHOTOGRAPHY OF CHILDREN AND BABIES

    5. LIGHTING . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .54Strobes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .54Monolights . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .57Power Packs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .57

    Built-in and On-Camera Flash . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .57Light Modifiers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .61Umbrellas . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .61Softboxes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .61Reflectors . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .62Grids . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .63

    Minimum Lighting Requirements . . . . . . . . . . . .63

    6. EASY AND EFFECTIVE LIGHTING . . . . . . . . . .66Three-Light Setup . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .66Two-Light Setup . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .66Effective Background Lighting . . . . . . . . . . . . . .67High and Low Key . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .68Lighting Patterns . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .68Flat Lighting . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .68Butterfly Lighting . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .68Loop Lighting . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .68Rembrandt Lighting . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .69Split Lighting . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .69Profile Lighting . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .70

    Conclusion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .70

    7. ARE YOU A PHOTOGRAPHER OR AN ARTIST? . .71Game Plan for Style . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .71Identify Your Strengths . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .74Props . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .74Variety . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .74

    Creativity . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .76Conclusion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .79

    8. DIGITAL ARTISTRY WITH COREL PAINTER . . . .81Just Add Water . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .81Cloned Backgrounds . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .84Auto-Painting . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .85Conclusion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .89

    9. POPULAR PLUG-INS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .90Black & White Conversion for a Subdued Effect .90Weird Dreams . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .94Conclusion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .94

    10. MARKETING THAT WORKS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .96E-mail . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .98Direct Mail . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .99Networking . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .99Word of Mouth . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .99Websites . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .99Glaring Omissions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .101The Game Plan . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .101

    Targeted Mailings . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .103Conclusion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .103

    11. THE PRESENTATION . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .104Traditional Proofs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .104Digital Proofs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .104Projection . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .107Conclusion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .107

    12. SALES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .108Basic Strategies . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .108Add-ons . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .110Frames . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .110Portrait Collections . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .110Purses and Jewelry . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .111Other Options . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .113

    Conclusion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .114

    13. CUSTOMER SERVICE AFTER THE SALE . . . .115Thank-You Notes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .115Mailings . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .115Phone Calls . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .116E-mail . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .118Make Customers for Life . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .118Conclusion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .118

    Resources . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .120Index . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .123

  • Marilyns fascination with the visual arts started when she was a little girland her two older brothers had a darkroom in the basement. She spent manyhours there watching as her brothers created magic pictures that appearedin what looked like water in trays. Her fascination with the darkroom was en-hanced at Halloween, when its eerie red light made the darkroom the bestfun house on the block.On her sixteenth birthday, the one gift Marilyn wanted most was her own

    camera. Her parents made her wish come true, and since then she has neverlooked back. The camera went with her everywhere, an