Last Saturday I took some pictures of Mayella, who is in the process of building a new website for her healing business. The pictures had to be natural looking, show Mayella's spirit and sense of fun and also, of course, to make her look good! We went to Lacock as I know the good spots for background and light as I teach portrait photography there with Lacock Photography.
For this first picture I got Mayella to turn her face towards the light; the shading on her cheek gives good definition and helps to narrow the face. The shade of a tree takes away light from above.
We then moved into the open and I put the sun behind Mayella. To give sparkle to her eyes I shot through a metallised reflector to light the face.
What a different shot! The light is softer and more even which is good for more mature subjects. The sun makes the hair appear white. The background is far enough way to make it appear soft and diffused. The reflector is an important part of getting the light right, but you could use anything that reflects light back into the face - even a white t-shirt on the photographer would help!
For this next shot we walked down to the stream in Lacock and had a little play. Hands are often difficult to photograph well - what do you do with them?! Leaning against something helps, especially if your model also leans towards the camera which makes for a flattering picture.
On our way back to the car we walked up an alleyway at the top of the village and stopped by the gate for a picture. The light here was good, but not quite where I wanted it, so I asked Mayella to look towards the light and laugh hysterically - it sounds ridiculous, but you have to wait until a natural laugh takes over - try it! I moved Mayella around so the background bushes would frame her. The lighter background gives depth to the image.
We had a lot of fun taking these images, and many more, and Mayella loved Lacock, which she had never seen before. I look forward to seeing them on her new website.