For Mother's Day, I photographed this beautiful mother/daughter duo Terri and Ali
at a magnificent park near us.
It's called Dow Gardens and the tulip garden is eye-popping!
Perfect for portraits.
This is a great shoot to talk about composition.
Some people are born with an innate feel for composition, but
you can also learn a few tips for capturing the best in composition.
First, you have to THINK about composition when you're taking the photo!
What are you trying to capture? A pretty setting, a feeling?
In this next photo, I wanted to show that they are walking in the tulips and
that there are a LOT of tulips. That's why I widened out and shot low so
the tulips are part of the composition.
I am choosing for the viewer to see the tulips as well as my subject.
Remember: The photographer gets to choose what the viewer will look at in the photo!
I was squatting down to take these photos.
That's so I can also include the gorgeous flowering trees in the background!
If I had been standing, Most of the pretty trees would not be in this photo.
When I look through my camera viewerfinder, I look at the entire frame.
Is somebody walking in the background?
Am I including the pretty pink tree?
Is there a lot of dead space?
If so...change your angle
to fix it!
As the photographer, YOU are in charge of what is in the frame.
Go in and arrange things to your liking.
Vary the height you are shooting from.
Try low, try high!
I shot low in this case.
I wanted the yellow and pink tulips in the foreground
to be part of the composition.
In this next shot, Ali is framed by the beautiful pink flowers.
I didn't just stand her in front of a pink flowering tree,
I composed her so some of the flowers were in front of her
and some were behind which blurred into gorgeous bokeh.
I backed up a bit and moved into a position where the flowers framed her lovely face.
I can remember including that flower in the lower left to complete the frame.
I took the time to capture this composition!
It doesn't just happen...
YOU CREATE IT!
Look for opportunities to include something in
the foreground and background.
Try using leading lines for the eye to follow to your subject.
In this next photo, the path leads you to Ali.
To emphasize the leading line, I shot low to
start the viewer's eye at the stepping stones.
Notice I shot wide enough so you can see the
tulips along the path.
Closing in on details can be charming!
As I looked through the camera viewer, I chose to put
the subject on the right so the tulips would be pretty
in the photo.
Really LOOK before you snap the photo!
WHAT is in that frame????
I also LOVE movement.
The dress blowing in the wind...
the subject walking away from me.
Go beyond a staged pose!
Shoot wide, then try medium, then close-ups!
Also, shoot both horizontal and vertical.
I know it's easier to hold your camera horizontal,
but some shots better fill the scene vertically.
Most of my customers like to frame the photos
that are shot vertical.
In the wider shot above, you get to see the setting with lots of tulips.
The closer shot is more intimate and really shows the action and captures her essence.
Notice I shot low again so I could include the beautiful pink tree in the background!
I like to create the composition when I'm in the
field taking the photo rather than
waiting to crop in editing.
YOU are the creator of the photo...
What do you want others to see in this shot?
Make it happen, by concentrating on composition!