Women being photographed in full length should wear long skirts,
pants, or dark stockings to keep the eye from being directed toward
the legs and away from the face. Dresses or skirts are usually
more flattering for women.
Men should have their hair cut about one week before the portrait
Women should be photographed whenever they are happiest with
So your kids don't have any shirts without a pattern or logo? Inexpensive,
solid color polo shirts, t-shirts, and long sleeved shirts are available at
Target, Land's End, and several other stores. A bit of effort in coordinating
the clothing will yield much better results in the look of your portrait.
About Clothing, Color, Tone, and Style
The goal of any fine portrait is to direct the viewer's attention to the
face or faces in the portrait.
Simple long-sleeved garments in medium to dark tones of brown rust, burgundy,
green, or blue are pleasing choices when photographed against a dark background.
Proper clothing allows the face to dominate the portrait. All other
elements should be secondary.
Bold stripes, plaids, checks, and prints are confusing and do not photograph
bright colors, such as red and orange, will completely overpower the
face and ruin a portrait. However, red clothing can work if the background
is colored to match. If one person in a group wears red, they will
dominate the image.
clothing calls attention to itself and away from the face. Avoid light
colors that approximate flesh tones such as beige, tan, peach, pink,
white, and yellow. Darker shades are more flattering and slimming.
Light colors are appropriate against a white or pastel background or...
with a dark background when an interpretive "pictorial" study is planned.
Clothing for Couples
With only two subjects in the portrait, it is especially important to dress
in the same color(s) to capture their relationship.
With business attire, a white shirt or blouse with a dark suit jacket emphasizes
your neck rather than your face.
Pastel, thin striped, or soft patterned shirt with subtle tie is preferable.
You may want to bring extra clothing and accessories, and we will help you
choose what looks best.
Couples or small groups should choose simple garments within the same
Light and dark tones together create visual confusion, as one subject
comes forward and the other recedes. Light colors add weight against
a dark background.
Excellent coordination, the faces hold your attention.
pattern in this blouse
Clothing For Families
In a family group, proper clothing coordination is critical. When decorating
a home, a major concern is to coordinate the colors and tones of the walls,
carpets, draperies and furniture. This kind of coordination also is necessary
when selecting clothing for a group portrait. Choose clothing in the same tonal
ranges to create a unified look, so that no single member of the family stands
out because their clothing is too light or bright as compared to the rest of
Outdoor backgrounds are very busy, so it is important to choose only one or
two theme colors, with your subjects wearing shades of those colors. While
blues are excellent all year, white, ivory, khaki and salmon are great against
such lush green foliage. Burgundy, brown, tan, and gray are nice late in the
visual statement made by the portrait on the left is "Here is a family
in which each individual holds a place of equal importance,"
whereas this portrait says "Here is a group of seemingly unrelated
that blends harmoniously creates timeless portraiture because the viewer's
eye goes directly to the faces.
in medium shades complement portraits made in outdoor environments.
Solid colors are best with the foliage texture.
The simplicity of two colors helps separate the family from the scenery.
A busy background and busy clothes result in hard to find faces.
Clothing For Children
Fine portraiture captures facial expressions and mood, while clothing, accessories,
and props are secondary and shouldn't create any distractions. Careful selection
of these will avoid a dated look to your portraits.
A white background will show off skin tones best when white, ivory or pastels
Be sure to select props that match clothing color. While the colorful pose
is a great secondary portrait for a child's playroom, it may not be suitable
for a timeless quality portrait.
Solid color clothing is most recommended to keep the focus on expression.
Avoid logos or busy patterns for a more effective portrait.
If families or groups of children are being photographed together, please
have everyone dress in similar toned clothing for a more unified look. Bare
feet are preferred over shoes, and children often find this more fun as well!
Children also look great in bare skin, which is the preference for newborns
and most children under the age of one.
This child is lost
among the colorful
clothes and toys.
This is a timeless portrait with well chosen clothing and props.
Clothing for Beach Portraits
The most important issue is to choose solid colors, no patterns, no plaid
Dressing in all white looks great on the beach.
Khaki or denim pants, capris, shorts or skirt with white or cream shirts also
Blue jeans with light to medium blue or soft green polo shirts looks great.
Think neutral colors found in nature.
Dresses and skirts for women are more flattering than pants or shorts. A flowing
dress is pretty as long as it is a solid color or very tiny pattern, no big
All subjects should be dressed in similar tones. For example, avoid dressing
one person in blue jeans and navy shirt and another in khakis and white shirt
- that's too much contrast.
Keep in mind that when viewing an image, the lightest area is what attracts
the viewers eyes first. Match the shoes to the pants or skirts. Be prepared
to go barefoot on the beach and even roll up the pants to wade in the water.
Planning your portrait will help me to create an artwork of a very personal
nature. As a decorative focal point in your home or office, your portrait
will serve as a reflection of your good taste and be a most appropriate expression
of your personal style.