High School Senior Portrait 2–Water Polo player Nicholas Barba

The evening light coming through the large windows made it very contrasty. So my 800WL was a necessity. ISO 100 1/160 f4 100 mm lens
The evening light coming through the large windows made it very contrasty. So my 800WL was a necessity. ISO 100 1/160 f4 100 mm lens

Generally speaking high school girls don’t mind having their pictures taken as much as boys.

So when Nicholas’ mum Staci approached me about doing her son’s senior portrait, I sort of expected he would have to be bribed  by his mum.

I’ve had to photograph large groups of VIPs  e.g the newspaper’s board members, university chancellors and other intimidating folks so a high school senior is easy, right?

Props are an important component to any photo. It gives your subject something to do with their hands for one thing. If familiar, the prop can help them be less self-conscious. Don't make the mistake of handing a gun to someone who has never handled one though. The terror will show unless that's your intention.
Props are an important component to any photo. It gives your subject something to do with their hands for one thing. If familiar, the prop can help them be less self-conscious. Don’t make the mistake of handing a gun to someone who has never handled one though. The terror will show unless that’s your intention.

Not exactly. It’s takes a different mindset.

No two subjects are ever the same and that’s why photographing people is one of the most challenging genre in photography.

What they all do have in common is this: all require my interacting with them so that they are at ease when I hold up my camera to my eye.

Fortunately Nicholas has photography as a class in high school.

So he even shoot film.

BW film which he processes himself and he make prints.

Nicholas with my backup camera as a prop. First thing he says to me: "Why is it so dirty (referring to my viewfinder)?" Yes, Nicholas it's never been cleaned in the 6 years I've owned it. lol
Nicholas with my backup camera as a prop. First thing he says to me: “Why is it so dirty (referring to my viewfinder)?” Yes, Nicholas it’s never been cleaned in the 6 years I’ve owned it. lol

It was my ‘in’ so to speak.

We started chatting about photography in general.

I had a backup body which I handed him and I made this pictures of him.

I kept my lighting simple: 1 moonlight, a WL800 with a grid and gelled with 1/4 CTO because we started shooting at 3:45p and the sun was already low and the interior of the building had warm orange brick walls.

There are a lot factors that determine whether a portrait session is success.

Most of the time, it’s open line of communication between the clients and the photographer.

The more ideas you share, the better the odds. Hopefully, this will give you some ideas.

Let me know if you have other tips to share under comments.

Nicholas-Senior-Portrait

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