It’s easy to forget in the modern era, but photography…
Cheap canvas prints are inspiring a new trend in personal photography: Portraits! The portrait is centuries-old, of course, and has always been one of the mainstays of photography. But the ability to create beautiful and affordable printed canvas versions of our photos combined with the power and infinite capacity of digital cameras and smartphones has brought this classic art form to the forefront.
So, more and more people are snapping portraits of friends and family for cheap canvas printing. Sadly, many of these portraits are awful. Posing people is half art and half science. Here are three quick tips to vastly improve your portraiture going forward.
Portrait Print on Canvas Tip 1: Go for the Angle
When most of us decide to snap a portrait, we generally stand directly in front of our subject and snap the photo straight-on. Unfortunately, even if you take your time with the lighting and the composition of your portrait, shooting it straight-on will make them look stiff and awkward – every time.
Instead, snap the photo from a slight angle. Play around a little with this, moving this way and that and taking several photos in order to get just the right view. Sometimes the most subtle of off-centre angles can have the most powerful effect on how the portrait turns out.
Portrait Print on Canvas Tip 2: Shift the Weight, Bend the Arms
When people stand ramrod straight with their arms at their sides, they look like they’ve just been turned into a statue. This doesn’t make for a very good portrait. Part of the problem is that many people get very awkward and nervous when you tell them you’re going to take their picture, with the end result being a very bad portrait.
Instead, try getting your subject to put their weight on their back leg and bend their arms? In fact, the rule is generally “if it bends, bend it” when it comes to limbs. The more they shift their weight and move their limbs, the better the final portrait will look.
Portrait Print on Canvas Tip 3: Look Away
Finally, far too many portraits have the subject staring directly back at the camera. This can work, depending on the personality of your subject and other aspects of the photo, but it can also come off as challenging and intimidating – or even unsettling. Instead, have your subject look away – even a slightly defocused gaze can have an incredible effect on the photo and make it much more attractive to people.
Cheap canvas prints have given us all the opportunity to decorate our homes with portraiture that can be equal parts powerful and beautiful. But the key to a great portrait is in the pose – and now you know the three most important basics for getting a good pose for your portraits. Go take a few – and then click here so we can turn them into cool canvas prints!