Tips Fotografi dan Potret orang in Photography

July 01, 2008, 05:21 PM
by Yogi Sujiwo
fotografi potret tips

Various Tips: on Photography and Portraiture 1. Turn off the lights The practical lights in your camera room should never "show up" in your photographs. If your shutter speed is slow enough, you will pick up green or cyan casts from fluorescent fixtures or red or yellow/red casts from incandescent lighting. That is a moot point because the house lights should not be on during photography sessions. ~ Top ~ 2. BW through Green Filter An old trick is to view your subject through a dark green filter that gives you an idea of how the subject will look in black and white. If you like to shoot black and white, you may try to use a green filter on the camera when working out of doors. It gives a healthy flesh tome and lightens dark green foliage so that dark suits and hair does not merge with the background. A light yellow filter when used in a (flash) portrait setup, produces pearly skin tones in portraits of the bride - combine that with a bit of soft focus and you have a wonderful effect. ~ Top ~ 3. Print yourself Some photographers opted to print their own work and started to break the ratio rules and produced negatives with plenty of shadow detail and printed down for the highlights. Doing that would produce color prints of superb quality with the added means of color to inject mood as well. ~ Top ~ 4. See the modeling light Turn off your room lights when shooting with modeling lights. The modeling lamps from you light units should provide enough light for focusing and composing. If you keep the room lights on you will not see the effect of your main light, let alone critical hair lights and kickers. ~ Top ~ 5. Battery conditioning Battery conditioning � is a major cause of card lock ups. Do condition batteries out of the box 3-4 times before first use. Telltale sign for half life of battery is short available charge and low frame count before battery charge dissipates. Cameras include Canon 1D, 1D Mark II, 1Ds, Nikon D1h, and D1x. ~ Top ~ 6. Improve storage card performance After retrieving all necessary images, wipe the card clean using a wiping utility from Image Recall, DataRescue, RescuePro, or other low level re-formatting utility on a PC every 6-8 weeks to insure fresh DOS format - format in FAT 16 only. To use Windows XP in Fat16, you have to drag down FAT bar and choose "FAT" for FAT 16 (it will normally default to Fat32). After, re-format in camera before shooting. This will improve card performance overall. ~ Top ~ 7. Don''t overshoot storage card capacity Don''t try to shoot beyond capacity of CF card, trying to squeeze out last few images to the CF card and "over shoot" CF card will cause the card to try to write the last images to unavailable memory thus corrupting the last few images and this leads to the CF card lock up. ~ Top ~ 8. Let it write first Don''t remove CF cards before camera is finish writing. This often happens when shooting raw images since they take longer to write. If you bang away on a Mark II or 1Ds for a while, be prepared to have a cup of coffee waiting for the disk activity light to shut off. It is advisable to wait a few extra seconds before turning the camera off or pulling the disk. ~ Top ~ 9. Eject in software and then remove Don''t remove cards from readers until properly dragged or manually ejected from reader depending on if is Mac or PC Windows system. It is good to wait a few extra seconds before removing the CF card from the reader after trashing or manually ejecting cards. ~ Top ~ 10. Keep it with the same camera system Don''t mix CF cards between different camera systems. This can cause problems even with the same models of cameras. Remember, every camera is its own unique system. It can be done, but it is better to keep CF card to one camera system instead of swapping them around between different cameras. ~ Top ~ 11. Be careful Don''t Wash, cook, freeze, expose to large magnetic fields, use as a dog toy, or otherwise treat the cards badly. They can withstand harsh environments better than older technologies, but be careful. Don''t get into the habit of putting them into your pocket un-protected, especially with more flimsy SD cards coming our way. ~ Top ~ 12. You are the only one Pro there Cover the issue about other shooters on the wedding day with the bride and groom at the initial consultation or in the contract. Make it clear that they are paying you for the professional shots and should their uncle, aunt, cousin, friend, etc want to take photos while you�re shooting it will probably make their formals look bad. "Why?" they ask... well, it''s a matter of attention. If there are 10 people in the group to be photograph and there are 4 people shooting cameras at the same time, do you think all 10 people are going to look at my camera only? They get the point immediately. Ask that they find someone who will run "interference" for you... an assigned person that they have picked whose job is to remind the other guests that the paid photographer MUST get his shots first before they all jump in. This way, you never have to have a cross word with anyone at the wedding and the other guy gets all the grief! ~ Top ~ 13. Non-refundable retainer Contract clause - Upon signature and receipt of retainer (non-refundable), the Studio/Photographer shall reserve the time and date agreed upon and will not make other reservations for that time and date. For this reason, unless the Studio is able to fully replace the canceled reservation, the retainer is non-refundable, even if the date of the wedding is changed or the wedding is canceled for any reason. In addition to the non-refundable retainer, the following cancellation fees will apply: 60-90 days: $100; 59-30 days: $200; 29 or less: $500 ~ Top ~ 14. Show the interactions Shoot more interactions between people during the wedding. There should be a balance between headshots and interactions. Interactions seem to be preferable because it represents the flow of the wedding and more PJ style than head shots. ~ Top ~ 15. Don''t forget to sign Sign the photographs bigger than 8x10 using PS layer and place copyright and your contact information on the back of the photograph. You can create an action to create a frame and add the signature at the bottom of each photo. And apply the action just before printing the photograph or sending to the lab. ~ Top ~ 16. Pricing structure When creating your pricing structure you need to think about how the sale of one product will affect the sale of another. In the case of the hi-res CD or negatives, you need to think about how that will affect the sales of your other products. In a portrait business model, your goal should be to sell as many high price point prints and albums as you can. You want to sell prints that will be regularly viewed as that is what is going to lead to referrals and repeat clients. I find that the more finished the product is that you deliver, the higher the satisfaction of the client. Cost is really a lesser issue for most clients when it comes to being satisfied with the outcome. ~ Top ~ 17. Sign the CF cards Write your name and phone number on all CF Cards, so in case you lost them there is a chance that the person who found them would call you. ~ Top ~ 18. Portrait session contract Make a contract for portrait session clients, where you include contact information about the client, order information, model release, a paragraph that says, basically, it''s illegal to copy photos and that liquated damages will be $3,000 ~ Top ~ 19. Solve the customer''s problems Marketing - The business continues to operate under the classic approach -- "Come buy this great product we have created or this fantastic service we are offering." The giveaway, of course, is the word WE. In other words, most business activities, including advertising, are dedicated to solving the firm''s problems. Success, however, is more likely if you dedicate your activities exclusively to solving your customer''s problems. ~ Top ~ 20. Focus on profit Here are some specific ways in which the marketing approach differs from the classic, or sales, approach to managing a business. (1) In the classic approach, engineers and designers create a product, which is then given to salespeople who are told to find customers and sell the product. In the marketing approach, the first step is to determine what the customer needs or wants. That information is given to designers who develop the product and finally to engineers who produce it. Thus, the sales approach only ends with the customer, while the marketing approach begins and ends with the customer. (2) The second major difference between the sales and marketing approaches is the focus of management. The sales approach almost always focuses on volume while the marketing approach focuses on profit. ~ Top ~ 21. Suggestion box Getting new ideas and suggestions - use Suggestion box. A suggestion box is a simple idea that works, but only if you do the following: (1) Read the suggestions on a regular basis; (2) o something about the suggestions you receive; (3) Reward those who give you good ideas by posting their names, writing letters to them or rewarding them with money or other things of value. The principle at work is: If you reward good results, you will get more good results. If you do not reward them, you will end up with an empty suggestion box and the mistaken idea that everything is fine. ~ Top ~ 22. Customer want list Customer want list - Keep a notebook at your cash register and write down every request you receive for items you do not carry or have in stock. Periodic review of the list will give valuable clues about sales you are losing or new products and services you should consider carrying. You may learn of fad items, products being heavily advertised or items and services your competitors have dropped. Your customers may be telling you they are dissatisfied with your competition and would prefer buying from you. You will be able to tell if other businesses in the area are in trouble, even before they know it themselves. You may also discover ways to make additional income by adding new departments or product lines or by developing a special-order business if your customers are willing to pay the added shipping costs and wait for delivery. ~ Top ~ 23. Advertising notebook Advertising notebook - Each ad that you run represents an investment. To make sure you maximize your investment, cut out each ad and tape it to a page in a three-ring notebook. (For a radio or TV ad, write a short description.) Enter the date, medium and cost of the ad. Record the results of the ad in sales, inquiries or coupons redeemed. Divide the cost by the results to get a cost-per-inquiry factor that you can use to compare your ads and the media in which they appeared. ~ Top ~ 24. Exit interviews Exit interviews - When someone leaves your employ, be sure to spend sufficient time to find out exactly why he or she is leaving. Probe deep to learn what may be occurring in your business that causes hard feelings, employee conflict or customer dissatisfaction. It is important that your employees leave with a good feeling about you and your business, so they will not spread unfounded rumors. Also, you may wish to keep them as customers. Employee turnover and training can be expensive to a business, so try to find out what you must do to keep employees and then decide if they are worth the price. ~ Top ~ 25. Promote related services It was noticed that doing weddings brings more portrait customers. So advertise the other services that your business can offer to the clients. The simplest way is to distribute business cards and refer to your website. ~ Top ~ 26. Expansion of Present Location Expansion of Present Location - Learn to spot telltale signs of saturation in your present facilities. Grocery stores, for example, keep track of abandoned carts. When a shopper fills a cart and then leaves because the checkout line is too long, the grocer should realize that there is a serious problem. If you are experiencing bottlenecks, think about adding to your facilities. Determine how many additional customers you could service by building up or out and compare the additional sales to the cost of construction and temporary inconvenience. ~ Top ~ 27. Relocation Relocation - If it appears unlikely that you can draw more customers to your present location (at a reasonable cost), consider moving closer to your customers. A location on Main Street, in a shopping mall or an industrial park may cost you more in rent, but if you gain exposure to new customers it may be a sound investment. ~ Top ~ 28. Additional Outlets Additional Outlets - Reaching the most customers may require opening several outlets at convenient locations throughout your market area. In addition to the added costs of real estate and multiple inventories, carefully analyze the cost and availability of labor and training, and the cost of hiring a manager for each location and installing an efficient monitoring system. Your advertising dollars may become more efficient since your radio, TV and newspaper ads cover your entire market. The multiple locations will make it more convenient for customers to find you. ~ Top ~ 29. Downward Vertical Integration Downward Vertical Integration - If your profits depend on the prices you pay for raw materials, your most profitable growth strategy may be to buy a farm, mine or processing plant to produce your own materials. This strategy also may make sense if your product quality is based on a consistent supply of goods at an acceptable quality level. In photography business it could be applied to doing the mats for photographs and/or printing the photographs, designing albums, without using external resources or providers. ~ Top ~ 30. Upward Vertical Integration Upward Vertical Integration - Remember, every time someone gets between you and your customer, it either reduces your revenue or increases your operating costs. Also, it impedes the provider-consumer communication that is essential to a good marketing program. It makes sense to analyze your distribution system to see when you can improve your situation by hiring your own sales team, contracting with distributors, buying a truck fleet, opening retail stores or factory outlet stores or doing anything else you need to do to get closer to your market. ~ Top ~ 31. Tourists'' Business Tourists'' Business - When you are looking for new customers, don''t ignore tourists who could be attracted to your area. Work with your local convention and visitors'' bureau to determine the impact if you cooperate with local tourist attractions or hotels and restaurants to get more people to visit and spend money in your community. The sales of photographs of your city/town and places around can be the part of your business directed on tourists as well. ~ Top ~ 32. Direct Marketing Direct Marketing - Selling directly to your customers is one of the oldest and most effective methods of marketing. Today, there are few door-to-door salespeople; most direct marketing is seen in party plan selling and through mail, TV and magazines. Direct selling requires good selection and training techniques and a commission plan plus liberal incentives. Incorporate direct mailing to your customers to remind about your business and offer new services or discounts. Don�t forget to ask for feedback and fill out surveys or provide testimonials, which you can publish on your website. ~ Top ~ 33. Market Segmentation Market Segmentation - Your marketing plan should recognize the various segments of the market for your product or service and indicate how to adjust your product to reach those distinct markets. Instead of marketing a product in one way to everyone, you must recognize that some segments are not only different, but better than others for your product. This approach can be helpful in penetrating markets that would be too broad and undefined without segmentation. No matter what you are making or selling, take the total market and divide it up like a pie chart. ~ Top ~ 34. Remember about details Use photographs of wedding details (such as a bouquet of flowers, invitation or a purse) as a breakage in the photo album, to go to the next section of the album. ~ Top ~ 35. Customer-friendly website Try to make the website as customer-friendly as possible; it could translate to being search engine-friendly as well. Weddings page(s) could be a big hit with search engines if you list not only the couple''s name, but the venues involved. Many people would find you that way (both in terms of relatives looking for their family''s wedding photos but also people looking for wedding information for a particular venue). ~ Top ~ 36. Photojournalism Photojournalism - Use people to complete the image, even it is about the scenery - usually it is faces and full bodies. When people present in the scenery image, they are either small and used more like a detail, or they are big (just heads and shoulders) and could be out of focus to give some sense of presence, or they could be in focus to tell the story of the place related to people. ~ Top ~ 37. Lock the focus with assist button Canon DSLR (10D, 20D, 1D bodies) have a nice feature to lock the focus with assist button, which is located under your right thumb. With this button you can lock the focus, compose the frame, if necessary make a exposure mesaure (half-pressed shutter button) and finally make the exposure. As well it could be used to lock the focus on certain area where you expect the subject appear - works for weddings when the bride walks down the isle. ~ Top ~ 38. Fill in to soften shadows On sunny day when the sun creates harsh shadows use the flash in fill-in mode to soften the shadows and create nice catchlights in the eyes. Canon cameras (with advanced modes) usually set the flash in fill-in mode when the camera in Av (Aperture priority) or Tv (Shutter priority) modes. ~ Top ~ 39. Patterns and repetitions Repetition of similar objects in a frame has its own appeal. You may use the repetition to emphasize an object/subject that doesn''t fit into the pattern and thus attracts the most attention. ~ Top ~ 40. Anticipate the action While shooting dynamic scenes or games it pays off very well when you anticipate the action and then make the shot. You have to know and factor in the camera response time, some cameras may take a few seconds to actually make the exposure after your pressed the shutter. ~ Top ~ 41. Use the kicker When using the kicker to place highlights on the subject head or shoulder - the best thing to do is shut down the modeling lamp of the main and fill light so that you can place that kicker and hair light exactly where you want them. Next, switch on the main light, aim it and feather it off (toward the camera) until you see the highlights from the kickers POP! ~ Top ~ 42. Move to see the head view Even when you take photographs of people try to stick to three views of their faces: 1/3 or 3/4 View, Full face and Profile. It wouldn''t take a lot of time to move the camera slightly to get the right angle on the face, but it could dramatically improve the photograph. ~ Top ~ 43. Facial Analysis The portrait session starts with the Facial Analysis and then you set the best pose for the subject, and only then you setup the light and meter the ratio and right exposure. When you change the pose, don''t forget to check the ratio and exposure. ~ Top ~ 44. Use the right frame One of the rules of composition, which more like a suggestion, is to align the main lines in the scene (or of the object/subject) with longest lines of the frame. It will accentuate the subject/object and will create a stronger composition. ~ Top ~ 45. Bounce the flash To create a nice portrait with the flash mounted on you camera, don''t point the flash directly at the subject. It will create harsh shadows and flat lighting. Rather bounce the light from the ceiling or walls. As well there are various accessories that work as bouncers: omnibounce and lumiquest. ~ Top ~ 46. Merge all layers in one new Pressing Shift-Ctrl-Alt-E in Photoshop combines all visible/active layers into the currently active one. Better to create an empty layer first and then perform this action. ~ Top ~ 47. Group portrait lights When shooting groups of 8 to 15, better usually to flat light them, by placing two flash units of equal power, one on either side of the camera, and both in umbrellas. The right one is aimed at the person to the extreme left and the left one is aimed at the person at the extreme right. Meter the group in the center and the outer edges so you would have the identical reading all the way across and shoot at that aperture. Place the umbrellas so the center shaft is about six to seven feet above the floor. This usually prevents eyeglass glare like you will get with an on camera flash unit. ~ Top ~ 48. Gradient density filter to control exposure When you photograph a subject in the window light and the window appear in the frame, it may cause overexposure of one side of the frame. There is remedy for that - use a gradient neutral density filter in vertical position to balance the light and exposure. ~ Top ~ 49. Flow of portfolio To arrange a portfolio here is a technique you may want to use. Print a contact sheet in Photoshop or proofs from Photo Mechanic with images from the portfolio. Then take every image you''ve printed out and scatter them across the floor. Then start arranging. You''re looking at flow and making sure you don''t have two similar looking images in a row. Sometimes flow can be helped just by looking at your subject matter and seeing where it is in relation to the frame. If you have an image, which is heavy on the right and bottom, so find a frame that is heavy on the left to put right after it. Even look at things like silhouettes, colors, lenses, shapes, etc., and make sure you don''t have things like two ''blue'' photos or two really wide angle photos right next to each other. If one has a very confusing composition and takes a little longer to read, make sure the next frame is simple and easy to read. It could go on and on, but just watch how each image plays off each other. Having two similar frames together kills both, where one could have worked nicely on its own. Every new frame should bring something different to the table to continually "wow" them. ~ Top ~ 50. Mouth against the eyes A rule of thumb for a portrait of a couple - the mouth of the man should be on the same level as her eyes. And their heads are slightly tilted to the center. ~ Top ~ 51. Feather the background As another means to create fill light you may want to bounce a flash unit or some other light source from the ceiling (behind the camera) and feather it toward the background so that the edge of the fill light beam just begins to touch the top edge of the background ~ Top ~ 52. Necks and collars Dressing the portrait subjects: Vee necklines provide better base and framing for the faces. If you use �boat necks� you have more loose skin under the chin and on the neck to deal with as well as issues around the collar bones. ~ Top ~ 53. Manual focusing technique Even in manual focus mode or when using non-auto-focus cameras, there is a focusing technique that some photographers are not familiar with. You must focus on the desired selected area and then go past that and go back again- this method is called �rocking� and it assures better manual focusing ~ Top ~ 54. Long exposure erases moving objects To remove people or moving cars from a picture in a single exposure, all you need is to increase the exposure time (shutter speed). That''s not always easy with existing equipment. You may need to extend the shutter speed up to several minutes. But it could be achieved by using Neutral Density (ND) filters. The thing works because the amount of light reflected from people is so much smaller than from the environment (or building). So longer the exposure, the harder to notice the moving objects. ~ Top ~ 55. Non-destructive Photoshop Photoshop: Use adjustment layers when you apply changes to the image. It will allow you to apply changes after you see the effect and made other changes or easily remove/toggle off the changes made by the layer. As well you can easily apply blending modes and layer masks to amend or limit the affect of the changes. ~ Top ~ 56. Copy the background layer Photoshop: Before starting modifying the image - create a copy of the background layer (Ctrl-J). ~ Top ~ 57. A few hot keys in Photoshop Photoshop: Remembering essential hot keys and shortcuts helps working with the image. Here are a few: ''D'' - resets the color of the tool (black foreground and white background), ''X'' - toggles background and foreground colors, ''B'' - switches you to the Brush tool, Ctrl-J - creates a new layer based on current selection (or a copy of the layer if nothing is selected). ~ Top ~

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