The Portrait: Photographing People


Saturday, October 29, 2016
9:30 am - 3:30 pm
One 6-hour session, broken into morning and afternoon sessions, with a break for lunch-time discussions, stories, and tips.


$40, similar to the fee for a 2-part seminar. Bring a brown bag lunch. We will provide drinks, snacks, and cookies. Register here.


In the AGE Computer Lab and in the conference room.


Bring your camera and/or smartphone, and any accessories you'd like to use. All levels of experience are welcomed. In the afternoon session, we will use on1 and Lightroom as our software, and principles learned here might be applied to other photo editing software.


If you've been wanting to take better people pictures, this workshop is for you! What exactly is a portrait? It's simply a photo of a person (or pet for that matter) when they know you're taking it. In fact, their knowledge that you're doing it and how they act on that knowledge is as much a part of the picture as you taking it. What tools do we need to accomplish a good portrait? Well, it pretty much it boils down to a subject, a camera, and light of some kind.

In this workshop we'll discuss making portraits to gain an understanding of all of these tools.

  • Camera and lens. We'll discuss the best options whether using a high-end DSLR, compact digital, or even a phone.
  • Lighting. The class will discuss using natural light, on-camera flash, off-camera flash, fixed lights, and light modifiers like reflectors, umbrellas, and soft boxes. We'll even talk about lighting kits you can make from supplies you can buy at Home Depot.
  • Subject: We'll discuss posing and interacting with the subject(s) to get the best looking shots. Putting the subject and light at the most pleasing angles and interacting with the subject while shooting can make a huge difference in in the outcome.

Then we'll do a photo shoot where you'll get the opportunity take some portrait shots yourself and use some different lighting setups to accomplish them. This will give you an opportunity to practice the techniques we discussed.

After the shoot, we'll take a lunch break. Bring a brown bag lunch. We will provide drinks and cookies. During lunch we'll share stories and photo tips.

Then after lunch, we'll take your photos to the lab where we can practice some post-processing using Adobe Lightroom and On1 Portrait. These tools will let you pull the best features of your photos of the subjects we shot and learn to do some basic retouching to adjust the photo, and do skin smoothing, blemish, removal, and specific corrections to facial features like the eyes and mouth.

The portrait below was made using natural light augmented with fill flash and a gold reflector.


Doug Miller

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