5 tips to enhance your portrait photos


When my friends travel to another province or another countries, they love to take photos as travelers. That photos is so nice. They smile together when they go to somewhere. They go to cafe, they take it and share to their social network.

But my friend consults to me about “Why didn’t my boyfriend take my photos well?”

That’s very big problems when many couples want to take portrait photos, but that photos isn’t so beautiful. I think her boyfriend adjusted bad composition or bad camera tools to do.

“Looks like your boyfriend doesn’t adjust good composition to take your photo.” I said to her.

“Can you teach me to take very beautiful photos? I will tell to my boyfriend.” She asked to me back.

“Of course.” I said.

And this is my suggestions to enhance your portrait photos to be beautiful.

Rule of thirds is so important


Don’t bore that grids that appears on your camera live view or your camera apps on your smartphone. 2 lines at column & row can help you to make great composition. Open it and let’s take photos.

So why rule of thirds is so really important? Because this rule is so simple and let you have beautiful photos as you want. You place main object at that column, and let another object to be float away and have second character.

Focus to model’s eyes

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

When you want to see someone, you contact to their eyes first. If you focus model to take photos, focus to their eyes, not their face. Due to prime lens that have very high depth of field, if you focus to their mouth, nose or somethings, their eyes will be blurred. So focus to model’s eyes first.

Luckily, now if you use lens with having automatic focus, many camera will focus on eyes when you want to take photos first. But sometimes you need manual focus lens because that’s so affordable. If you use manual lens to take photos, focus to model’s eyes immediately.

Let model to use something


Such as using smartphone, eating meals, holding flower, holding bag, wearing glasses, taking photos with her camera, etc.

When model does something that make model to be more gorgeous than you think because posing was artificial, not come from the deep of mind. And holding something make her to have stories you want to tell, such as she is calling to someone, she gets flower from her love, she is hungry so she want some meals.

Change camera angle

Portrait with Miyuki (change camera angle)

I have some bad experiences about taking photos and have bad position. That pictures is good, but I feel like that is robot who is posing to me. Not lively. When I see that photos, I delete it immediately and take again.

Until I visit No.1 blog in Thailand called Cookiecoffee. His photos are taken with different camera angle. His orbit is changed until I think his sight is so interested. He is blogger who review about foods or new smartphone and every photos are taken with his smartphone. Then I use that camera angle for my photos.

If generic camera angle isn’t great, try rotate and shoot it.

Choose prime lens with 35mm or greater

For portrait photos, I recommend to 50mm or greater. The charm of prime lens is you can blur background greater than you think. And light details is so soft. If you want to take all of photos, use 35mm (APS-C camera) or 50mm (Full Frame camera). And difference between using prime lens and zoom lens will appear.

But if you don’t have money to buy prime lens, another way to take portrait photo is taking photos at widest angle of kit lens (16mm for APS-C and 24mm for Full Frame). That make your portrait have beautiful photos.

Processed with VSCO with f1 preset
Miyuki again (with Kit lens 16mm)

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