My absolute favorite subject to photograph is my daughter. She is extremely photogenic, beautiful, follows my direction, and comes up with a lot of her own creative ideas herself.
When I was in Florida for two weeks, I spent a lot of time taking her picture. Yes, we had fun, and did a lot of sight-seeing, but we also used the beautiful places we visited as back drops for great photos.
Ashley is a professional singer who has primarily been involved in the classical music field for the past six years since receiving her Master's degree in voice. But now Ashley is ready to venture out and start writing and singing her own music. She wanted me to help her along in this process by taking pictures of her that she could use for publicity in social media. I was more than happy to help out..after all, she is my favorite subject to photograph!
We went to so many interesting and beautiful locations and brought a ton of different styles of clothes for costume changes. In these first two photographs Ashley is wearing a gold ball gown she wore in a previous performance. The pictures were taken at Kraft Azalea Park where there was a magnificent Greek monument that made the perfect backdrop for the Grecian style dress.
We were also lucky to be at the beach on cloudy/stormy days, so we had a lot of interesting lighting and skies to work with.
Props are great for adding interest and meaning to photographs. By holding a scarf in the air, the viewer can see the wind...something that is otherwise invisible in a photograph.
No scarf? No worries, lift your skirt up and let the wind blow and shape the fabric. Or let your hair flow naturally in the breeze. Little details like this help the viewer to feel as if he or she were actually in the photograph scene themselves.
In this photo, Ashley enhanced the red to make her lipstick and the flowers in her top pop against the soft blue of the ocean.
Never forget to take all the color out sometimes and just use black and white for a very meaningful, deep photograph.
When taking a photo, or having your portrait taken, ask yourself "What am I really feeling/thinking right now?" and close your eyes and think about it. I love this photo because for me it represents what I personally feel whenever I am at the ocean: peaceful, happy, awed. I also love the color in Ashely's top and how well it coordinates with her make up. It looks gorgeous with the ocean blue behind her.
I often read on fashion blogs about women complaining if it's too windy their hair is whipped around and either messed up or gets in their face. I get that somewhat, but frankly I think photos look far more interesting when the wind is moving the hair. It's very natural and soft looking to me.
Umbrellas always make great photo props, and they help diffuse lighting if the sun is too harsh.
The back drop of a beach doesn't always have to be the ocean. Sand dunes are fabulous backgrounds for the green color is not only complimentary, but because they are hills you get all that fabulous color and interest behind and above you.
Looking away from the camera gives the feeling that the person is deep in thought.
This next set of pictures were taken in downtown Winter Park Florida.
Art sculptures make interesting photos on their own, but add a person to the scene and you create a whole new dynamic. I love how the colors in the sculpture make the colors in Ashley's outfit really stand out.
Try to coordinate your clothes with your back drop. This vintage outfit and hairstyle look perfect against the background of the quaint train station with it's historic lamp posts.
The color of your outfit should also coordinate or stand out against the color of your back drop. The black in Ashley's outfit in the top picture compliments the black lamp posts. And the black in the dress Ashley is wearing below really pops against the white of the buildings. The greenery, red walls and brick also really highlight Ashley's gorgeous dress.
And finally, never forget to let your personality shine through. The majority of the photos we took of Ashley were for publicity purposes to showcase different moods/styles of her songs. But this last one is one of my favorites, because to me it shows exactly who Ashley really is: sweet, loving, kind, caring and joyful. I adore her so much!
And if you have never heard Ashley sing, be sure to check out this music video. She wrote the song herself, and her brother (my other amazing child) is also on the video playing drums.
Have a Great Day! Amy
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