How to take outdoor portrait photographs

As a portrait photographer, one of the things I love most is taking portraits outdoors with natural light. There is something so beautiful and magical about capturing someone in their element, surrounded by nature.

Whether it's a family photo shoot, engagement session, or just a portrait of a friend, taking photos outdoors is always my favorite. And when the lighting is just right, it can make for some truly stunning portraits.

Here are some tips for taking great outdoor portraits with natural light:

1. Look for soft, diffused light

One of the keys to taking great outdoor portraits is finding soft, diffused light. This type of light is very flattering and makes skin look smooth and flawless.

The best time to take outdoor portraits is during the "golden hour" - the hour just before sunset or just after sunrise. The light during this time is soft and warm, and it creates beautiful shadows.

Another great time to take outdoor portraits is on a cloudy day. The clouds act as a natural diffuser and soften the light.

2. Use a reflector

If you can't find soft, diffused light, you can use a reflector to create it. A reflector is simply a piece of white or silver fabric that you hold under the subject's face to reflect light back up into their eyes and soften shadows.

You can buy reflectors at most camera stores, or you can DIY one by taping a piece of white poster board to a piece of cardboard.

3. Shoot in manual mode

When taking outdoor portraits, it's important to shoot in manual mode so that you have full control over the camera settings. This is especially important when shooting in direct sunlight, as the light can be very bright and can cause the photo to be overexposed.

In manual mode, you can set the aperture, shutter speed, and ISO to get the perfect exposure.

4. Use a lens hood

When shooting in direct sunlight, it's important to use a lens hood to avoid lens flare. Lens flare is when the light reflects off the lens and creates a bright spot in the photo.

A lens hood is a piece of plastic or metal that attaches to the front of the lens and blocks the sun.

5. Set your white balance

When taking outdoor portraits, it's important to set your white balance correctly so that the colors in the photo look natural.

For most outdoor portraits, I recommend setting the white balance to "daylight." This will make the colors in the photo look natural, even if the lighting isn't perfect.

6. Use a tripod

If you're shooting in low light or using a long focal length lens, it's a good idea to use a tripod to avoid camera shake. Camera shake is when the camera moves while the shutter is open, and it can cause the photo to be blurry.

A tripod will also allow you to use a lower ISO, which will result in less noise in the photo.

7. Use a remote shutter release

If you're using a tripod, it's a good idea to use a remote shutter release to avoid camera shake. A remote shutter release is a cord or wireless remote that you use to trigger the shutter.

This way, you don't have to touch the camera at all, which will eliminate any chance of camera shake.

8. Shoot in RAW

When taking outdoor portraits, I always recommend shooting in RAW format. RAW files are unprocessed and contain all of the data from the image sensor. This gives you a lot of flexibility when editing the photo.

If you shoot in JPEG format, the camera will process the photo for you and you won't be able to make as many changes in post-processing.

outdoor portrait in nature

9. Experiment with different angles

One of the best things about taking outdoor portraits is that you can experiment with different angles and compositions.

Try shooting from different heights, distances, and angles to see what looks best. And don't be afraid to get creative!

10. Have fun!

The most important thing to remember when taking outdoor portraits is to have fun! Relax and enjoy the experience. The more fun you're having, the more it will show in your photos.

8 Different Reasons You Should Hire Famous Portrait Photographer

Do you think it's ever worth hiring a famous portrait photographer in Hong Kong?

Yes of course! At some point of your life, there deem to be a chance you met someone trying to be a photographer. In order to success, they can try to collect referrals, lower their expenses, be creative, work for free, whatever it takes to kick start their photography business. Regardless of all this, only few really succeed.

Photography and visual art essentially require the same amount of skill, training, knowledge, and time to create a visual image. When taking photos of your brand, you certainly don’t want an amateur creating your image. You want a professional, someone skilled in how to translate an image that makes an absolute statement of your brand. We will tell you hiring an expert is well worth the cost.

They are qualified and experienced in portrait photography

Reputable portrait photographers uses years of training at university or an apprenticeship in photography to help create images of you. They understand the framing of the scene and where shadows, lighting, equipment and even poses that helps to show the beauty in you. They know how to make the best possible images for a given lighting set-up or position. Experienced professionals can adapt to unexpected changes on set as they shoot, which means that they will capture the shot you want to use, rather than missing it due to distractions like background items that crop up. Amateurs might bring a camera to your session but that does not mean they know how to use it properly. 

You can be in photos.

If you use one of the images that are generic and represent no real interaction, then you might be giving a wrong impression to your customers. 

We want stock photos that are creative and that showcase our products, the top portrait photography services, and products/services to show our personality. To do this, we need help from the most famous portrait photographers in the world to take the initiative in arranging the image shoot in a way that will produce good photos and help promote you / your brand for many years.

Portrait photographers the post-production skills.

Anyone can take some photos. However, it takes “Hollywood” lighting, a computer with a lot of bells and whistles, and a lot of Photoshop, Lightroom, and filtration to turn those images into compelling work. Whether you send a photographer friend over some snapshots to show them what you want or the photographer comes to your home for a photo session, the job is in his or her hands to turn the snapshots into gallery level of work. You definitely don’t want a friend who has never done professional photography before.

Portrait photography will be more than a fast-snapshot.

We all have cameras on our phones, and we all been taking images of our “everyday” occasions.  But when you We all have cameras on our phones, and we all been taking images of our “everyday” occasions. But when you want to have images that reflect your brand, engage with your audience, there is no going except hiring great portrait photographers. We all know it is important to document our daily life in Hong Kong with smartphones but it is equally, if not more importantly to have great photos to represent your brand.

They care about making you feel good.

Unlike a friend who is helping out, photographers in Hong Kong is truly looking after your interest instead of "just practicing". A professional is trained for years, using all this skills to meet your expectation, understanding you might have time restrain on the project, and he is there to deliver the result that makes you feel happy.

You could even need a little guidance.

Many people become a bit anxious when having their photos taken, especially if this is a business shoot and you have your colleagues or boss involved.  A professional can ease the situation, helping everyone relaxed and act naturally. With the experience, they can give you guidance on posing and also talk to you during the shoot so you feel comfortable, relax, and look natural in the portrait photo shoot

They usually have the equipment.

Your friend may know how to take a candid photo, but a professional photographer has all the equipment. Do not be surprised if they show up with a crew of assistants rolling in cases of lighting, camera gear, backdrops,  and a rolling editing station. With the exception of a professional coverage, they have invested an overall fortune in Your friend may know how to take a candid photo, but a pro has all the equipment. Do not be surprised if they show up with a crew of assistants rolling in cases of lighting, camera gear, backdrops, and a rolling editing station. With the exception of a professional coverage, they have invested an overall fortune in their photography equipment, and use every piece from the most practical to the most hard to use for their photography. A pro will have everything ready at hand so he can adjust on the spot for weather or lighting changes, extra shots (backup battery) to make sure no shot has been missed.

You deserve it!

Some people feel that photography is not in the best interest of their families. They don’t know what they could do Some people feel that photography is not in the best interest of their families. They don’t know what they could do with their images, or they feel like it is a waste of time and money. They’re wrong. As we ages we forget many important things and those we feel are important. Photos help us hold on to those memories. Everyone deserves moments that will be remembered, and, in the end, then we all can recreate our family pictures along with our memories for generations to come.

10 Creative Ideas For Fall Family Photos That Aren’t Basic

The leaves are changing colours atop the trees. The smell of pumpkin spice is in the air. Fall is here, and it’s the perfect opportunity to wrangle the crew and get outside for beautiful fall family photos

If there are young children in the family, getting everyone organized and on the same page at the same time is your first obstacle. Your next obstacle is making sure your fall family photos are original, representative of your family, and worthy of hanging on the wall year-round. Make your family photo shoot about your family and your family’s interests, not the colours of the season. Fall comes every year, but if you have children, it’s their ever-changing looks you’ll want to capture, not just the change of season.

Done right, seasonal photos can become timeless treasures to share for years to come. LittleThings has put together 10 creative ideas for your family’s fall photos that will help your photos stand out from the rest.

fall portrait idea 1

1. Bring in the Props

Props add a special something to a photo. Pumpkins and haystacks are the obvious fall choice for props, but think outside of the box. Do your kids play a certain sport? Break out the sports gear for the photo shoot. Does your family love to watch movies together? Think of a film theme. 

Two props that are universal to memorable photos are signs and balloons. Write your family’s name or a cute and funny quote on a decorative chalkboard sign and hold it up as a family in your photo. Balloons are also a fun, colourful, and simple addition to help liven up family photos. You don’t need to overdo the props, and you don’t need to stick to a fall colour scheme. Have fun with it!

fall portrait idea 2

2. Be Natural and Have Fun

I don’t know about you, but my kids don’t exactly sit still on a neatly laid blanket in an open field, all while smiling and directly facing forward. Sure, it all makes for a perfect photo, but families aren’t perfect. No two families are alike, and their pictures shouldn’t be either.

Walk, dance, play, interact, and have fun with each other. You want the photos to be representative of your family and all of the personalities in it. Stiff, traditional poses are common for a reason, but natural scenarios end up being the best shots deserving of a spot on the living room wall.

3. Switch Up the Angle

Your professional photographer is more open to your direction than you might think. When you talk to your photographer about your photo shoot, mention that you want to buck the tradition of straight-on photos. Get creative with it. 

Eye-level angles make for a more intimate point of view. High-angle shots can include more of the beautiful outdoor fall scenery in your shot. There's also titled angles and long shots for an edgier perspective. It's all about what's fitting for your family.

fall portrait idea 3

4. Add an Action Shot

Action shots aren't just reserved for sports photography. If your kids are hardly sitting still, take advantage of that and get a cool shot in motion. Make sure your photographer has plenty of advanced notice that you want action shots. They require lots of camera memory and a photographer willing to capture them — and possibly with some experience in doing so.

Family photo shoots are tiring enough as it is, so don't feel the need to spend the whole session in motion. Just welcome the opportunity to get in a few good ones.

fall portrait idea 4

5. Match Outfits, If You Must, but Be Unique

Matching outfits are the epitome of the fall family photo shoot and family photo shoots in general. The white shirt and khakis are starting to become more like a family uniform, unfortunately. Sure, coordinating colours and matching outfits help ensure the photo looks put together, but it’s time to rethink this tradition.

Instead of the uniform white shirt and matching khakis or jeans, get colourful. Wear floral headwear, matching patterns, or even graphic shirts.

fall portrait idea 5

6. Don’t Match At All

Skip matching altogether and simply wear what looks good. Instead of matching outfits, you might focus on things like your home decor. Where's the best place for this photo to live on the wall? Now coordinate the decor and colour scheme to fit, not match, the outfits you wear.

7. Head Into the City

It's fall, and the trees are beautiful, and the weather is crisp. The natural lighting in the fall is also usually pretty amazing. Why not be outdoors? That doesn't mean that you have to be in the grass and in the leaves. For a totally different type of fall photo, head into the city. The concrete, the buildings, and the people make underrated backdrops where the focus is still on your family.

8. Don't Forget the Family Pet

Our pets are a part of the family. They love the outdoors. Bring them along, and let their playful nature lighten the mood of the family photo shoot. If they'll agree to wear a bow or a bow tie, bonus!

9. Embrace Fall at a Rustic Location

When you think fallen leaves, haystacks, and pumpkins, you think fall. They're seasonal. Your family photos are meant to be timeless. The rustic theme, however, looks good year-round. Cabins and barns make great rustic locations for photos. Rugged benches, such as the ones often found in forest preserves, will work too.

fall portrait idea 6

10. Vary the Background

Play with shapes and lines by moving some family members to the background and some to the front. Shortest to tallest is an easy way to decide, but arrange a few shots where the parents get to shine in the front, too.

fall portrait idea 7

Moving the setting to a beautiful wide-open space is another way to vary the background — if you're lucky enough to live close to one. Don't worry that it will take the focus off your beautiful family. A good photographer knows just how to capture the beauty of the landscape while emphasizing the love between the subjects at the focal point.

5 Tips for Taking Family Photos in the Summer

After almost a decade as a family photographer, I have seen it all from epic meltdowns to picture-perfect dream sessions! Follow these 5 tips for taking summer family photos to make things a bit easier!

summer family photo 1

5 Tips for Taking Summer Family Photos

I know first hand how overwhelming taking family photos can be with little ones in tow.  But it doesn’t have to be! Here are a few tips I’ve learned along away to help make the summer photo session more fun and relaxed!

Tip #1: Dress Cool

The first of the 5 tips for taking summer family photos might be the most important!

While layers can be so cute, we all know the summer heat is absolutely brutal. Mommas, try a flowing dress like this!

summer family photo 2

Short sleeves or rolled up sleeves for dad is great!

summer family photo 3

Taking photos in the summer is the best excuse to put the girls in beautiful, light summer dresses and sandals!

summer family photo 4

Shorts and short sleeves for the boys is perfect!

summer family photo 5

There is nothing worse than feeling so uncomfortable in the heat so try your best to find something light, comfy and cute!

Tip #2: Plan out the color scheme

My second tip for taking family photos in the summer is to really think through your outfit colors.

Think about where you want to display the photos. If you have a neutral vibe with the photos, they will look good in every room! If you have a navy and gray living room and know you want to display the photos there, consider incorporating navy into your photos to match!

summer family photo 6

Taking photos in the fall?  Check out our fall outfit inspiration here!

Tip #3: Timing is everything!

I never fully understood the importance of a mini session until having kids. Now I totally get it!

Try doing a mini-session, 20 minutes or less, to keep the meltdowns at bay. Your little ones will have a better chance of holding it together for 10 – 20 minutes. Especially in the summer heat, you’ll be glad you did a shorter session.

Another important tip for taking summer family photos is to consider doing the session in the morning or late afternoon!

With the sun setting around 7 pm or later during the summer, you might find yourself trying to do photos during prime “witching hour” if you do an evening session.

Tip #4: Arrive early, fed & happy

My fourth tip for taking summer family photos is to make sure to arrive early for your photo session! Corralling your family in your Sunday’s best is tough enough so don’t add the stress of being late. Give yourself a 30-minute buffer if you have to! Do whatever it takes to arrive early so you don’t add on the stress of being late and missing time during your session.

Also, you’ll want to eat ahead of time! Nothing is worse than a hungry toddler … or husband! Am I right?! Make sure everyone is happy and fed so that all you have to do is play and love on each other during the session!

I know not everyone is for bribes during sessions but fruit gummies really are the only thing that gives us a fighting chance with our toddler. If you know there is something that will motivate your little one, bring it!

summer family photo 7

Tip #5: Don’t sweat the small stuff

I mean this quite literally! We all know it can get quite sweaty in Hong Kong but don’t worry about it. Dab it if you can and move on! It most likely won’t show up in your photos.

Also, don’t worry about the small stuff! Relax, have fun, and just embrace your crazy life! I know my life with two little ones right now is ridiculous! 9 times out of 10 they are screaming in the photos we try to take off one of them with my big camera. For real, we took our Easter photos with us smiling and Kayla in the background screaming! It was hilarious. I could get frustrated but I know it’s just life right now! She won’t be like this forever! I just try my best to distract her and have fun.  Eventually, she warms up and we at least get a couple!

Also, kids tend to feed off of your energy. If you are rushed and stressed, it could affect them more than you think. Odds are that if you are calm and having fun, they will too!

I hope these 5 tips for taking summer family photos help make your session a total success! You got this!

Cheering for you always!

So much love from our family to yours!

How To Choose Props For Your Photo Session

Have you ever thought about adding props to your photo sessions? Props can add interest, depth and an extra flair to your pictures, and if used correctly, can be a timeless addition to your session.

However, it is important to be careful when choosing props for your session, especially for sessions that are not done in your own home. Here are a few tips for ways to incorporate props in your next session.

While you might have recently seen a few photos that incorporate a specific prop, try not to use something that will not look really dated in 20 years’ time. Classic is definitely better and there are many fun options to choose from. When you look back on your photo session, will you really want to see that trendy hipster accessory? Our couple below brought along love letters that they wrote to each other and had calligraphed by an artist. We love this romantic touch to their session, and we know that they will treasure those letters years from now as well!

choose props 1

Be realistic

It’s easy to go wild when thinking of a theme or props that will go with it for your photo session. One tip that can help you avoid this is to actually incorporate every day items that you use or that inspire you. For example, if your child has a signature baby blanket or something their grandparents handed down to them, bring that along. Do you and your fiancé or spouse love going to the farmer’s market to pick out fresh vegetables and flowers? Then incorporate a florist-arranged bouquet or pack a picnic for your session. Before you decide to remake your favorite movie scene, think twice about how realistic it is for you to be in those outfits and acting something out. Remember, we’re not here to create a dream life for you — we’re here to document your real one! 

choose props 2

Size matters

There are some larger props that work really well in photo sessions. For example, if you love going on road trips and want to incorporate a vintage car or you absolutely love horses and want those in your session, that makes sense because as we stated above, that’s realistic. It’s a part of your real life. However, there are some larger props that can take away from the beauty of the photograph altogether. Make sure that your prop enhances the photo and doesn’t detract from it. One of our sweet families brought along the stuffed fox above that ended up being their son’s favorite: it made an appearance at their maternity and newborn sessions as well! It was easy to pack and a family favorite! On the other hand, this vintage car below became our couple’s getaway car — it belongs to the bride’s grandfather!

choose props 3

Make it meaningful

If your child has a favorite stuffed animal or if you have a musical instrument that you treasure, try and incorporate it into your photos. This way your pictures will have more meaning to you and your family. On the other hand, do not overload your photos with “cute objects” that you saw on Pinterest. You absolutely do not have to go out and buy all of those props that you saw in that one photo while you were scrolling at midnight (and we recommend that you don’t!). In the photo below, one of our couples incorporated blocks that their baby shower guests wrote on for their daughter. This is a wonderful example of a meaningful prop that made the perfect addition to their newborn session!

Use what you have

Make the current season work to your advantage by using what’s available. Leaves in the fall make for amazing props in photos and don’t cost a thing. In the photo below, our bride-to-be used a jar of matchbooks that her grandparents collected on travels to style their bar cart. Adding this brought a feeling of legacy in a simple object, one that is true to them (and one that probably won’t ever be replicated — not even on Pinterest)! 

choose props 4

Remember, using props can be the perfect addition to your photos but make sure that they don’t become the main focus! These photos are about you, not your props!