205 West Main Street
Carrboro, NC 27510

Photographing People

Taking better photographs of People.


People are the most photographed subjects in our society and they can be the most interesting as well. A good people photograph tells the viewer something about that person by the way emotion and character connects with the viewer. Here are six simple tips to make your people pictures more effective.


  1. Fill the frame with the person’s face. If you need a full body shot of the person, turn your camera vertical in order to make the subject as large as possible in the photo.
  2. Take several pictures at different angles, and with different lighting. If the sun is bright, use a fill flash to fill in the shadows in the eye sockets and to kill the shadows from the hair, glasses, nose or ears.
  3. Put your subject in a bright area while finding a darker more simple background. This will help have the subject “pop out” in the photo by providing contrast.
  4. Use telephoto lenses when shooting portraits. Wide-angle lenses tend to distort the shape of your subject’s face. The further you stand away from your subject, the more comfortable your subject will be.
  5. Set up your equipment before you start shooting. Make sure that you are ready to go before hand. You will have a better opportunity of catching a more natural expression.
  6. Relax everyone you photograph before you start shooting, and keep him or her engaged while you are shooting. When they are paying attention to what you are doing, you will get better results.


Be sensitive to those that you photograph. If you sense tension or uneasiness, try relaxing them by telling a joke or by complimenting their appearance.