Portrait Photography Must-Haves| Best Additions to the Photography Studio
— Read on blessedshadows.com/2020/03/08/must-have-photography-tools-and-equipment-for-the-portrait-studio/
I don’t know about you, but I don’t have as much time or space in the photography studio as I used to.
Gone are the days of using a DSLR, desktop/laptop editing, swapping out lenses and dressing a set.
(For now, at least)
As space and time get constricted, and camera phone quality continues to improve, the transition to shooting and editing portraits on a cellphone came naturally.
Editing doesn’t have to be complicated, especially on your phone.
So follow me as I do a quick, routine portrait edit for a flapper-themed boudoir photoshoot, shot and edited on an iPhone 6s.
This is the original, straight out of camera shot.
We’re going to run this through the convenient (and free) Lightroom app so that we have a consistent look throughout the rest of the shoot.
Boost the colors and contrast.
You can see where the backdrop ends and the studio wall is showing, so right in the photo gallery editing section we’re going to use the marker tool to fix that.
For the last step, we’re going to smooth skin, boost select details, and add some blur, reminiscent of a shallower depth of field given by DSLR lenses. For this, I use Facetune.
And here’s the finished portrait, shot and edited on a phone with simple tools.
We can get more complex later, but we don’t need to go all out when we shoot and edit portraits.
When we lack the space, time, and even finances to do shoots with a DSLR,
camera phone photography and self portraits are a great way to make some beautiful work.
What are your favorite editing apps for selfies and portraits?
Would you like a more in depth tutorial on flow and editing apps?
Like and leave a comment!
Step into the Shadows and shop creations
Beauty, fashion, fantasy portraits don’t have to take forever to shoot or cost a lot of money.
With basic materials featured listed in Portrait Photography Mist-Haves, all we really need is a camera (even an iPod camera), a light source, and something to wear (or not).
The world needs art, and as humans, we need to express ourselves and create.
With so much uncertainty, we don’t need to worry about spending money on fancy equipment. We don’t need to wait to create.
How do you create on a budget? What are your essential tools for creating?
Earrings by Dope Mystic
This tarot-inspired photoshoot was the perfect opportunity to experiment with backdrop, framing, and implied movement, all while lying down in the studio.
When you’re not using a fast lens (or Burst mode on a camera phone), don’t have a lot of room and definitely don’t have someone to hold or toss fabric and hair to create movement, what do you do?
You lie down!
This backdrop is a fabric print of a forrest with a ribbon-wrapped hula hoop with me laying on top of it.
There are quite a few wrinkles, so I’m curious how this kind of shoot will look when done on the studio floor instead of a mattress.
The frame was ringed with black shawls and the hair was fluffed to give the impression of movement or weightlessness. Underwater shoots are so stunning when it comes to that graceful movement, but in studio, the best we can do sometimes is to lie down or jump in front of a fast lens.
I highly encourage you do some fantasy photoshoots lying down. It can get some great lighting and some beautiful effects.
What have you been experimenting with in the photo studio? How do you bring a little more magic to your fantasy photoshoots?
In this list you’re going to find my favorite additions to the photography studio over the last ten years, big and small.
Everyone’s favorite tools and equipment and accessories for their work are personal, here’s mine:
- DSLR body: Start out with a basic body. I still love my kit camera from 10 years ago, it’s a Nikon D3100 with my upgrade being a D3300.
- Glass: I’ve become a sucker for fast prime lenses in this small studio. My favorites are 85mm f/1.8 and my 50mm lens.
- Ring light: Perfect for smaller studio spaces.
- Continuous Lighting: I love lightweight floor lamps with daylight LED bulbs.
- Flashguns and umbrellas: These have given me my most luscious lighting, but not my favorite option in a cramped studio.
- Remote Trigger Release: This has been indispensable. I almost always use this one but I also have a few other versions depending on the shooting situation. It prevents a LOT of running back and forth.
- Polarizing Filters: Remember to choose quality so you’re not degrading the quality of your images. Not only will these handy filters boost colors and reduce glare, they’ll help keep your lenses safe from scratches.
- Rechargeable Batteries: Extra points if you use a solar panel to charge these.
- PS and Lightroom: I bought PS CS5 for my computer back when Adobe wasn’t subscription based. I use the free Lightroom app on my IPod to edit my mobile shots.
- Computer: Editing photography on a laptop isn’t ideal (depending who you ask) but it frees up a lot of space in the studio. If buying a computer, research ahead to see if it’s a good option for photography.
- Monitor Color Calibrator: Calibrate your monitor and, in your editing program, use the best color space when editing and saving. Plenty of great tutorials for this online.
- Backdrops: aka: Blankets, curtains, etc outfitted with safety pins to hang from nails on the wall. Check out your local thrift shop to see what colors, textures, patterns and prints you can find.
- Mobile Camera: Gorgeous shots are absolutely possible on a smartphone and other devices. A growing number of my portraits are taken with my IPod. It’s a great way to experiment and get different shots before shooting the same look with a DSLR, or to do an entire shoot.
- Mobile Camera Accessories: Tripods, selfie sticks, and clip on polarizing filters and other accessories are available for mobile devices.
- Flash Drives: You’ve worked hard to create your work, be sure to save copies somewhere off your computer.
There you have it!
My favorite tools and equipment that I’ve adored the most over the past decade in the photography studio.
What are your own favorite tools and pieces of equipment?
Share with your friends and trade your own list of must-haves!