View Full Version : Family/Engagement Shots

10-08-2008, 01:27 PM
ok, well - i had my 1st shoot with the couple ive talked about before. this was a 'break the ice' meeting, where i took some shots of the couple & their kids. i'll be doing their wedding next august. these are a few of my favs. i've posted quite a few together, since its not something i can re-shoot, so i dont need tons of c&c, but if anything sticks out to you - let me know! anything i can do in post would be helpful.

btw - i have no flash or reflectors etc, this was all just available lighting. shot between 530-700 pm. im hoping to buy a flash & play around this winter with indoor lighting. i know this would help enormously with the brightening of eyes etc...

10-08-2008, 01:39 PM
Some general comments:

On #1, really nice shot, although a little angle instead of straight on would do. You also need to work on the sides, the back is way to square and visible.

#3, IMO, too much air between them.

Overall, nice colors and tones, really liked #2 :)

10-08-2008, 02:43 PM
thanks fante! i see what you mean about 'too much air' - i looked back and in all the family shots, the kids were piled on and between the parents, which i should have switched up & got the mom and dad closer together. i'll remember that on the wedding day. :)
i did bring a little step stool with me, so i was able to use that a few times to get a little different angle. here are 2 more shots- one angled a bit up, where i knelt on my knees, and one from the stool, angled down...

10-08-2008, 03:10 PM
hey kiley.... i think these are well done considering the lack of equipment... the poses are generally fluid and the subjects appear relaxed. here is my nitpick list

image 1

-on my monitor i see a dark patch on the female forehead(center to right)... it doesn't look like a shadow

-the dof is not shallow enough.. as such ... branches are extending out of the male subjects head... positioning them farther from the tree is something to think about..

-i am impartial to the square vignette... if they like it then great...

-the male subject teeth are bad and i was gonna suggest that you ask him to keep his mouth closed(how rude)... but by presenting his teeth he is showing a certain level of comfort so stick with it... (i think it's just distracting when evaluating a photo for critique).. the family most likely doesn't care about it..

image 2

-like the idea and the shallow dof
-if the hand and ring are the focal point you should show more of them... maybe by making her hand flat or moving camera left

image 3

-is the perfect example of why a reflector or some fill flash is required... the shadows are everywhere... especially on the kid center frame and on dads sweater from the baby.... dad could hold the baby closer to prevent the shadow....

-as far as the composition I am unsure about the child in the middle... but it's different

-you can ease the tension from the shadows in post (not remove them but lighten them)

image 4

-imo the picture should have been taken from the other side to get the ring in the frame.... i think hand holding pictures are mostly feminine so sell the girls on the shot... girls like rings... this is just my opinion...

hope this helps,

btw.... are you shooting raw yet?.... raw can really help you in processing ... especially in shots like #3 when you need extra latitude to remove shadows etc... not so important for your family shots... but now that you are doing work you should be getting comfortable with raw and it's processes...

10-08-2008, 05:00 PM
Kiley - I am sure that your clients will adore your work! They are lovely! I won't bother with any cc as it has been covered.

10-08-2008, 05:20 PM
travis - great feedback, thanks as always... nope, not shooting in raw just yet. but i did notice i have the option of capturing in both jpeg & raw on the nikon, so im going to try to start giving it a go... and ive enlisted my sister-in-law, whos a hobby photographer also to help out, getting a 2nd camera, 2nd angle & more candids. so together we want to work on figuring out the whole reflector business ...

thanks also susan, ive shown her a few shots and so far she is very happy...


10-08-2008, 07:07 PM
I think Travis pretty much nailed everything; the only additional comment I have refers to #3; all of the children are looking at something other than the camera. They don't need to look right down the lens, but at least toward you would be good.

10-08-2008, 08:06 PM
yes, they were all looking at the sister-in-law i mentioned above...
they were quite the little troop to deal with for my 1st attempt. the boys were crying about 87% of the time and didnt want to try anything. luckily the little girl was just a doll. both parents were very camera shy, and spent a lot of time looking at the kids. i had a heck of a time getting all 5 to look at the same place. i tried my best though...