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Self Portrait

By Bluebiriyani
Hello EPZers!

Based on critique last week, tried to improve and play around with lighting today, I "think" I have achieved a more even light, but I appreciate, still loads more to learn.

This is the first self portrait I have done, I absolutely hate myself in front of camera, but was a very good exercise for me, to understand the engagement required with the models to really get the natural look.

So in this particular case, I am not looking for critique on my bored looking face, but more on is this becoming sharper and more technically acceptable as a half decent portrait shot.

I have paid attention to Sooty and Willie from last week, and done the following:

Moved key light closer and 45 degrees of camera,
used a tripod.
fill light to the side
and a third brolly light to the opposite side but slightly less power.

Shot tethered to a laptop with remote control, so kept moving and posing, and adjusting as I went.

Tried two different crops, and I think this one works better. see second version for other.

Also upped the ISO, and fstop based on feedback from last week.

As ever appreciate your feedback and critique, and as you can see I value it immensely, as I put it into practice straight away.

So what would you do next to this, to step it up, or what would you not do, that I have done? etc etc.

Many Thanks

EDIT: Despite looking in the mirror for the last 34 years, I have only just realised one of my eyes is significantly smaller than the other!

Tags: Portrait Headshot Self portrait Portraits and people

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This photo is here for critique. Please only comment constructively and with suggestions on how to improve it.


Sooty_1 7 1.5k 221 United Kingdom
6 Aug 2012 2:04AM
I think it's a pretty credible portrait. Males can usually stand harsher, more directional light, but this might just need a little lightening.
With males, you can have the key light toward the front and the fill light the same side, for a darker masculine image, or you can move the fill to the opposite side (as here) for a higher key, less stark image.

The main points....
You have a white shirt and a white background, both have texture and aren't blown out, so you can lighten the image without losing detail.
You have plenty of detail in your face, with no bright hotspots, and it shows your features with no ugly shadows.
The crop in v1 is fine! V2 can work as well

I think it's as good as many that shoot portraits professionally can achieve (look online..!).

You don't need to look so apprehensive. Lean slightly toward the camera and pull your shoulders back slightly. As you extend your neck, you will lose the lines...but that's nitpicking.

For a female, you can bring the main light further to the front for more flattering light - even above the camera - keeping the fill to one side and maybe a light on the hair from above and behind (rim lighting separates the hair from the background).

Most importantly, make notes so you can reproduce set ups that work.


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6 Aug 2012 9:05AM
Thanks Nick, Very good feedback, and great suggestions which I will test and try out.

Thank You.
banehawi Plus
13 1.8k 3881 Canada
7 Aug 2012 7:41PM
I thought that though its a good job as Nick has pointed out, the lighting is a little flat, and you may look better with more definition, as if there was more differential lighting used, - so maod loaded as an example.



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