We are currently living in unprecedented times and this casual portrait photography in Nairobi was extremely tricky given the fact that I like doing my outdoor shoots in the evening to utilize the sunset and the evening vibe. But the curfew forced me to do the shoot at noon. The clouds were not very friendly since they kept on unleashing the harsh light from the sun creating hard shadows.
My assistant came with a softbox and a Speedlite that helped in balancing the light since we used the light to kill the shadows. We were not able to shoot in the direct sunlight but we tried to filter the light to create a good ambiance.
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Assistant photography: MathewVisuals
Model: Reina Beaty
Camera: Sony a6500
Lens: Sony 35mm f1.8
Light and accessories: Softbox and Speedlite
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Casual Portrait Photography tips
- Get closer to the model: Most photographers use prime lenses like the 85mm which forces them to shoot from a distance. But it’s advisable to get closer to the model so that you can give directions and the model will be comfortable on set
- Camera settings: It’s important also to master the camera settings, exposure and composition to capture the best image from a shoot.
- Anticipate a pose or behavior. Master human nature and generally being aware of how people usually react in different situations
- Engage the model. You can give the model a specific character and engage the muse in a conversation before and during the shoot. Think about how you’d feel if someone approached you and wanted to make a photograph. How they did it would determine how you would respond.
- The lens, natural light, and other accessories. A prime lens will give you sharp images than a kit lens and the best thing is some prime lenses are pocket friendly. Natural light also good for portrait shoots but it’s important to carry a light and a few light accessories.