Taking photos of people is actually much harder than people realise, particularly on a professional level. There are so many things to consider in order to get that perfect shot. Of course thanks to advances in technology, and the digital camera, it is now much easier for a photographer to take plenty of photographs in order to find that perfect shot. 

Here we look at some of the things you should consider if you are looking to take better photos of people. 

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Get to know your subject

Getting to know your subject before you start taking pictures can really help to put them at ease with the camera. This doesn’t mean you need to know their life story,simply a few details could suffice. Perhaps get them talking about something they are interested in. When people relax, they are more comfortable with the camera, their pose is more natural, and they are less likely to have a forced smile. Think about photos you might have taken of your loved ones that have worked well. You might simply have pointed a camera and clicked when they were distracted with something else, and not even aware of the camera. 

Try natural shots

Posed photographs will only work to a certain extent. There is something incredibly forced about posing your subject and having them look at the camera. If you are looking for great photographs of people rather than portraits, then consider taking the photos in an environment that your subject feels comfortable in. This might be outdoors or indoors. They don’t need to be looking directly at you. In fact, it is often better to just take photographs of them doing something they are comfortable doing in order to get that perfect shot that captures the essence of your subject. 

Use your camera in portrait

Cameras are made to be held most comfortably in landscape mode, the problem with taking photos of people when you hold your camera this way is that you will end up with a larger amount of background at either side of your subject. The simple solution is to turn your camera 90 degrees and use it in portrait mode when taking a picture of someone. This also means that if you want to, you can get a little closer and get a little more of them in your image. Of course if you are taking a picture of a group of people then landscape will always work better. 

Don’t be afraid to get closer

Whilst you could always crop a good photo and edit it so that your subject matter is closer, you will lose some of the clarity in your image. It is much better if you want a closer shot of your subject to actually get closer to them in order to capture the image you are looking for. It is wise to stay around two metres away from your subject, particularly if you are using a flash. 

Try a plain background

Sometimes when you take pictures of people, the background can appear to be more interesting than the actual subject. Try using a plain background so that all of the focus of your image is centred on the people you were trying to take a photograph of. This background doesn’t have to be a backdrop in a studio, simply something that isn’t too distracting. A brick wall for example makes a great background. 

Watch the sun

Finally, the sun can cast some awkward shadows or if it is behind you cause your subject to squint. Make sure you know exactly where the sun is when taking your photos and make any necessary adjustments. 

Share your Photos Online 

If you want some tips and tricks on how to improve or just wish to receive some general reaction and feedback on your photos, joining a photo sharing site is a great option. A photo sharing site will allow you to upload your images, sharing with other users the photos you have taken. Your photos will then be available to download and purchase, if you wish. An ideal way to determine the quality of your photos and ways to improve.