There are many reasons why you should know how to take group photo’s or family portraits. Many a times, people want their picture taken on the fly and it’s not feasible to have professional portrait photographers to take them.
Every family deserves to have at least one good family portrait together but it’s nice to have additional portraits as the family grows and ages. The best way to learn to take portraits is to practice on your own family or friends! And don’t forget to get in the picture too, if you’re taking your own family portrait! So be sure to use a camera with a remote shutter button release and a timer.
If you’re just Starting to learn photography,then taking portraits will also help refine your other photographic skills.
Without further ado, here are some tips to help you get started taking memorable family portraits, whether formal or informal.
1) Avoid the “Police Line Up” Portrait – Instead of having everyone stand shoulder to shoulder, try a more varied arrangement that makes it easier to have everyone fit nicely into the portrait.
Staggering the subjects in the photo is one technique that works well for group pictures. For instance, you may want to stagger family members on the front steps of a porch or around a group of boulders so some family members are standing and others sitting. If in a park, two siblings might sit on a low hanging branch of a tree or all could sit on the lawn clustered together. Show family closeness by spacing members close together.
2) Show Relationships – You can do this with placement in the family portrait poses. For example, Grandma and Grandpa might stand next by each other, a toddler in their parent’s arms, or siblings with their arms slung around each other.
3) Try Including the Family Pets – if they will hold still long enough. Even if the pet is stilling still, you probably should increase the Shutter Speed Priority to 1/250 to avoid blur from small movements like a wagging tail. It’s always easier to take an individual portrait of someone with their pet (or their pet separately) but if the family has a calm pet, try to take some pictures with and without the family pet.
4) Get Creative with Props – depending on the nature of portrait you want. Does the family play community baseball? Each family member could hold a ball, bat or mitt. This is most popular for individual portraiture that works well for family portraits too.
5) Get Everyone Smiling – Instead of just having them say “cheese,” put them at ease by talking to them so they’ll become more relaxed and cool. When you’ve got everyone posed and smiling, ask the family to hold them until you show them the signal that you got the shot.
Always try to make it fun and take lots of pictures so the family can choose the pictures they like the most. You’re sure to get some keepers where the family will feel proud to frame them for all to see.
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