Today we are going to be talking about 2 of the most important areas of your photography: Focus and Framing. You can follow every other piece of advice I've given you, you can make gorgeous garments, you can get that tough child to stand still and smile; you can strain your back and burn your thighs making sure you are shooting straight on; but if you miss these two components your photography may not be what you want it to be.
Remember how in part one I talked about getting to know your equipment? Well, this is where it shows whether you have learned that. Every camera is different and is going to have different ways to focus, but chances are no matter what equipment you are using, you can find an article or youtube video to teach you have to get the best focus with your equipment. So take some time this weekend and play with the focus of your camera. Practice around the house in different lighting, practice with inanimate objects at first as you get the hang of it, and then practice on your kids when you aren't trying to get modeled shots of your kiddos. Nothing makes for a grumpy kid faster than you trying to learn and adjust your equipment on the fly.
Your point of focus should ALWAYS be on your child. If you are taking a close up, make sure that your camera is focusing on the collar or pocket and not a bush in the background. Nothing is sadder than getting that perfect shot and then seeing that it is blurry!!! So play, practice, and show me what you've learned!!!
Now this is where the importance of the type of photographer we are comes into play. We are testers, we are garment photographers, we are product photographers. We are many many other things too, but it is important to know what we are to get the right shot. As a wedding photographer I take very different photos than I do as a garment photographer. Shooting weddings, I am capturing a scene, a mood, the artistic memories of a day. A a garment photographer I cam capturing clothes. And I need to capture the details of those clothes so that someone who will never hold my finished product in their hands knows what it looks like and to some degree how it was put together.
In part 1 I let you know that you need 3 main shots of each of your tests. Full front, full back, and either a full or close up shot of the side. So let's break that down. For your 'full' shots you want your child, or the garment you are focusing on to fill at least 75-90% of your picture. There is no reason for extra background, because that doesn't help tell about the garment. The easiest way to get these shots is by taking a vertical picture - vertical pictures do better on Pinterest and Instagram as well - so that is a win win! I switch to horizontal for close ups and detail shots because I can usually get more visual interest that way.
Now - once you have your main shots, have fun! Capture some cool angles, get a shot that shows of the gorgeous location that you selected for these pictures. But FIRST get those shots, shoot tight and make sure your focus is right on your subject!
Come back next week for the conclusion to the series!!!