RichPointofView

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The official blog of RichPointofView is to inform, educate, and inspire in all things photography related. Original articles showcasing the behind the scenes of various photography styles. Richard is a photography enthusiast and entrepreneur based in Harlem, NY.

70 Ebony Beauty Portrait Photography Examples

70 Ebony Beauty Portrait Photography Examples

Diversity is what makes our world come alive and black color is beautiful. It’s an undeniable fact that Black women are insanely beautiful with some of the most stunningly captivating features. 

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Portraits are my favorite type of photography for a number of reasons. First, unlike landscapes, no one can take the exact same portrait. It is physically impossible to get someone’s expression, body language to be exactly the same at a particular moment. Second, portraits create a story with the subject and its background. Lastly, people love getting their portraits taken and it is a service to others. 

Portrait photography can be incredibly compelling, and you'll find that the best photographers relish the opportunity to shoot portrait photography. 

1. Composition

A great portrait needs great composition. The subject is at the picture's centerpiece, so don't hesitate to zoom in on your model for a close-up. Zooming in doesn't mean sacrificing the background. It can mean creating an excellent composition to achieve the desired effect. Try various camera-to-subject angles, as well, and move around or move the subject.

Think creatively for a more interesting picture. There are no hard and fast rules when it comes to creating a good composition. However, if you're shooting for a client, ask first if they're willing to allow you to shoot a few more creative shots. Otherwise, practice when you're not doing a customer's photo session!

False Paradise
from 44.00

This photographic print leverages sophisticated digital technology to capture a level of detail that is absolutely stunning. The colors are vivid and pure. The high-quality archival paper, a favorite choice among professional photographers, has a refined luster quality.

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2. Camera Settings

A classic portrait often has a blurred background allowing the viewer's eyes to focus on the subject. To achieve this effect, set your camera to Aperture Priority and select the largest aperture on your camera lens, such as f/2.8 - f/5.6. You'll get a shallow depth of field and a blurred background for effect!

Side note: When shooting in Aperture Priority mode to control your depth of field, your SLR should set the shutter speed (at least 1/150) for you for the correct exposure and to avoid camera or subject movement. Your autofocus should be configured to single shot and make certain your focal point hovers over your subject's eye when you frame the shot.

3. Eye Contact

Traditional portrait photography involves good eye contact between the subject and the camera. Even if you're looking to shoot a more creative composition, ask the client to make eye contact with the camera first then turn in the direction you want. It's usually best that the subject's eyes remain in the upper third of the picture because it creates the most natural balance and spacing in the shot.

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4. Lens Options For Portraits

  • A 50mm lens makes images sharper, but you'll need to move around to fill your frame as you won't be able to zoom in with the lens.

  • A wide-angle lens (about 18mm) is best for a large group. You will be able to fit everyone into the picture without having to step too far away from the group.

  • A telephoto (70-210mm) lens restricts the angle of view, but it could be worth it like when taking the picture of a wedding couple in the church from a balcony. The telephoto lens let you zoom in from above without sacrificing image.

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5. Strike A Pose

How you pose your subject can dramatically affect a portrait. Whether it's their expression or how they stand, it can change the feeling or the emotion of the shot. It's always a good idea to try different poses and expressions, so your clients have a variety from which to select. You'd be surprised what customers end up choosing!

6. Lighting

The best (and easiest to work with) light possible is natural, diffused lighting.The best times to take pictures are the early morning hours and early evening hours just before dusk. Avoid the bright sunlit hours or you'll need to consider exposure and flashes. Bright sunlight, even directly overhead, can cast shadows either across the face or behind the subject! Cloudy days are ideal for portrait photography. If you need to shoot in direct sunlight, use flash to fill in the shadows and light your subject's face. 

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Autumn Road, Storm King Mountain, New York
from 40.00

Are you someone who loves fall weather all year round or loves nature in general?

Each print is signed and numbered. This is a first edition of this fine art print and is limited to 50 pieces altogether, ranging from various sizes and prices.

New York offers more than just subways and cityscapes if you look at the news. Outside of Manhattan, upstate New York provides endless landscapes and breathtaking views. One of the longtime upstate destinations is Storm King Outdoor Museum. Acres of land with various sizes of sculptures provide the tourist attraction with a lot to see and photograph.

Printed on Moab Estrada — a matte paper with museum grade archival ratings, and a luxe presentation.

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7. Raw File Format

Portrait photography benefits from shooting raw even if it means a larger file size. If you plan on printing or enlarging the picture, shoot raw because it allows you to edit the file without compromising the original. JPEG is a compressed format, and you lose valuable image data. While it's easier to work with JPEG, raw best preserves the image which can make all the difference when editing or printing the photo.

8. Post-Processing

The beauty of digital is the ability to edit your photos on your computer. Lightroom or Photoshop are two of the best for advanced photo editing software. You can correct a lot including color and lighting and smooth out imperfections. Photo editing software can be a lifesaver with portrait photography!

9. Your Subjects And The Photo Session

Make your subject as comfortable as possible and put them at ease in front of your camera by talking to them before and during the session! Explain in lay terms what you'll be doing and tell them about the equipment you'll be using. Remember that shooting children's portraits isn't the same as an adult's picture. Be sensitive to their needs.

10. Education & Inspiration

Learn from others! Take classes but look at what others are doing by looking through magazines and websites! Check out the styles and elements you like. 

Portrait Photography can be incredibly rewarding as a photographer. It can be poignant and powerful, and it can elevate your photography skills to a new level. It's a challenge most photographers happily seek out at some point because they understand its rewards.

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Below, you’ll find 70 inspiring beauty photographs of black women! From the shades and character, I hope you incorporate more black women into your campaigns!!!

Red October, Dubai Desert
from 40.00

Are you a lover of contemporary art or of nature photography??

Each print is signed and numbered. This is a first edition of this fine art print and is limited to 50 pieces altogether, ranging from various sizes and prices.

With the help of a week long trip to Dubai in 2015 and the Lightroom program, a manipulated photo was born. Taken in a desert during a safari trip, the landscape and just the overall beauty of what Dubai has to offer was captured. After numerous edits of this photo and listening to Kanye West, you have what I like to call Red October, an ode to the Red October Yeezy sneakers.

Printed on Moab Estrada — a matte paper with museum grade archival ratings, and a luxe presentation.

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Super Blood Wolf Moon Close, New York City
from 50.00

Did you miss the rare Super Blood Wolf Moon Eclipse of 2019???

Each print is signed and numbered. This is a first edition of this fine art print and is limited to 50 pieces altogether, ranging from various sizes and prices.

The Super Blood Wolf Moon takes place during a supermoon. A full moon in January has been called a Wolf Moon ever since colonial times, which is where the “wolf” part of the name comes from. This is the last lunar eclipse until 2021.

Printed on Moab Estrada — a matte paper with museum grade archival ratings, and a luxe presentation.

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