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Photographing eyes

Tips on photographing close-ups of eyes.

| Portraits and People

Photographing eyes: Brown eye

  • Macro lens - take a look at the 60mm f/2.8D AF Micro NIKKOR - Nikon's most compact Micro lens for close-up and general photography.
  • Ring Flash (optional)
  • Flash Gun (off-camera)
Whether you're shooting a full portrait to crop into later or just focusing close on the eyes you must make sure they're in focus before you shoot. If your subject's squinting move them so they're not looking directly into your light source but when it comes to blinking, there's not much you can do apart from take the shot again.

The problem with using a macro lens is your subject will, obviously, be close to your lens so if you put a flash gun on your hotshoe your lens can cast shadows on your subject's face. Direct flash can also create red-eye in some people which is never a great look. Instead, you can position your flash off-camera or pick up a macro ring flash which will illuminate the eyes equally without any shadows. It will also create a circular catchlight so the eyes don't appear lifeless.

Having your subject looking directly at you will give you a shot that has the most impact. However, the shape of your subject's face, their eyebrows and if you include it, even their nose will determine what angle works and what doesn't so be prepared to experiment. Don't be afraid to direct your subject either as after all, you only have their eyes to create impact with and if they're not showing the right emotion you need to tell them. Using props to cover parts of the face, such as scarves, can direct the viewer's attention to the eyes. If you don't have a scarf any material should work even bandages.

Whether you're a beginner looking for a compact camera or a pro in the market for a high-end DSLR visit Nikon – the company who has photographic gear to suit everyone.

Photographing eyes:

Photographing eyes:

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