A Vibrant Concept for Topic Placement in Portrait Photographs


With cautious composition and enhancing methods, you may take your portrait sport to the following stage. On this video, I’ll present how one can stage up your portraits with this one easy tip.

Earlier than we start, make sure to obtain the train file right here and comply with alongside as I edit.

What’s the Tip?

The tip is kind of easy: Place your topic within the brightest a part of the body.

I’ve two causes for this: First, the eyes are naturally drawn to the brightest a part of the body. Second, doing this will provide you with extra flexibility while you edit. I’ll reveal the second level shortly. First, let’s start with how you can apply this method when taking pictures.

Composing the Shot In-Digicam

I discovered this stunning location simply off the facet of a lodge and a serious freeway. I started with a check shot of my couple and the very first thing I observed was the patch of open sky in the course of the body.

Since our eyes are naturally drawn to the brightest a part of a picture, it’s normally a nasty thought to put your topics away from it. Our objective is to attract the eye to the couple so I positioned them proper over the patch of open sky. Discover that within the second photograph, we’re naturally drawn to the couple.

Right here’s one other instance of this tip. With this open sky behind my couple, I merely positioned them proper in entrance of the solar. The pure vignette helps draw the eye proper to them.

Within the second instance, we have been taking pictures proper subsequent to a big open door. The sunshine was pouring in from the facet and I positioned my topic instantly within the mild which my assistant was diffusing with a big scrim. Pairing that with a darker background helped draw the main target on to her.
On this instance, there aren’t any direct highlights like the primary two. As a substitute, we’ve a darkish background and light-weight pouring in from the facet. I positioned my topic proper within the mild which my assistant was diffusing with a big scrim. With many of the mild falling on my topic, she turns into the principle level of focus within the photograph.

Enhancing the Pictures in Publish-Manufacturing

Let’s see how highly effective this tip will be while you take your portraits to post-production. I started by making use of the Fashionable > Delicate Gentle preset from VF Presets.

Merely add a radial filter to darken the areas round your topic. When our topics are positioned within the brightest a part of the picture, we will primarily modify the sunshine whereas nonetheless wanting pure. Discover that within the edited picture, it seems as if the couple was lit by a soft-box when it was really simply ambient daylight.

The identical precept applies right here. After making use of a preset, I added a radial burn across the couple. I’m primarily enhancing the pure vignette to drag extra focus onto my topics.

For my final instance, I took a distinct method. As a substitute of a radial filter, I started by decreasing the general publicity. Then, I used the “Dodge Highlights” brush from the Retouching Toolkit to color mild again onto my topic. The comb selectively lifts the highlights and makes my topic pop from the background.

All Pictures supplied by Lin & Jirsa

I added a delicate radial burn and arrived at this ultimate picture.


I hope you loved this text/video. Give this tip a strive subsequent time you’re out taking pictures portraits. All you must do is look out for the brightest spot in your body and place your topic there. Then, you’ll see the way it can remodel your picture in addition to the enhancing flexibility it’ll present as soon as you’re taking it into post-production.

For a full course on enhancing, make sure to take a look at the Mastering Lightroom over on SLR Lounge Premium. You can even discover intuitive lighting based mostly presets just like the Fashionable Pack in addition to the Retouching Toolkit at Visible Stream.

Don’t miss our subsequent episode of Mastering Your Craft on Adorama’s YouTube channel subsequent week! If you wish to atone for all of the episodes, be sure you take a look at our playlist!

In regards to the writer: Pye Jirsa is a marriage photographer based mostly in Southern California and the co-founder of SLR Lounge. The opinions expressed on this article are solely these of the writer. You could find extra of Jirsa’s work on Instagram.


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