Choosing the Right kind of Subjects for your Photographs

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So you’ve decided to take a set of photographs. You probably have an idea in mind – or a theme, if you will. Given that, you know you have to work with people in your imagery. Putting that together seems like a tough call given that you have to identify the appropriate subject for your shoot. With the best of the world’s photo enhancement techniques, you know you can create the end result – but a huge part of getting there really involves finding the right face to go with your ideas. This post will help you identify some of the key things you need to keep in mind while looking for perfect subjects for your photoshoot.

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– Understand your needs well. It is important that you know what you are looking to project, what the motivation underlying it is, and how you want to best project it. It doesn’t help if you are at sixes and sevens vis-a-vis what you hope to achieve with your photographs.

– Identify the kind of look your subject needs to have. You may have a typical idea of what the perfect model look is – but really, all you need is for someone to project well on the lens – and create the effect you are looking for. Beautiful, cute, rugged, handsome – they’re all really subjective terms. Take your time and observe people. Watch the faces you see around you and identify the one face that will tell the story you want told. That’s your perfect model.

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– Look for confidence. Given that you are using the photograph as a vehicle to communicate with the viewer, you really need to find the kind of model who exudes confidence and comfort in their own skin. Someone who is inherently shy might not be a convincing window into the thoughts you want to share through your imagery. Look at how they talk, walk, project themselves – indulge in some conversation with potential subjects before rounding in on one choice.

– The models themselves should know their basics. It isn’t all your work alone – to get them to pose and hold their poses. Natural is good, but there are occasions where orchestrated shoots are needed. In those instances, your ideas need to find the right clay to mould and take shape appropriately, so that the essence of your efforts are conveyed.

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– Don’t be afraid to be different, and to break the norms. There is nothing right or wrong – it is just about getting your ideas across. Choosing a subject that isn’t the chip off the regular, stereotypical block doesn’t quite serve much of a purpose really, if it is not doing what it should in conveying the stories it is setting out to.

Take the plunge with your choices! Remember, we’re not all looking for the Naomi Campbells and Giselle Bundchens of the world – we’re really ideally looking for a face to launch a thousand ships on the story we want to tell.

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