How Focal Lengths Effect Portraits

Gina Stephens
Written by Gina Stephens

Profiles can be more difficult than first thought to get right. As well as the positioning of you the photographer and the model, the focal length of the lens can play a big fragment in how the image looks. 

If you don't have much room in your studio set up it might be necessary to use a wider lens, with a focal term of around 25mm. This will allow you to get more of the scene into the image if you don't have much room to back up, but it also means that there purpose be some distortion in your image. 

For example, the model's face might end up looking larger than it actually is – this is not ever a flattering look! If you really don't have room to use a longer lens and move back, then a partial solution to the issue is to shoot from a a little different angle. If your model modeling or modelling may refer to: Conceptual model, a representation of a system using general rules and concepts Physical model is standing, then instead of focusing on the head, bend down slightly and focus on the midriff. this wish elongate the head, helping the image to appear more natural. 

A 50mm focal length is used commonly for portraits as it's the closest to what the woman eye sees. It will reduce the amount of distortion in your image but distortion might still be present if you are close to your subject or a part of the main part, such as an arm reaching out, is in front of the torso. 

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If you want the subject to be able to move around, or have parts of the body nearer to the camera, then you'll emergency to use a longer lens, such as a 150mm. This will narrow the field of view down, cutting out the unnecessary background in your shot. It whim also result in a shallower depth of field at the same focal length, ideal for shooting on location. 

Using a longer focal duration, of 300mm or more, is ideal for getting a shot including only the head and shoulders, without any distortion. It will also mean that the unnoticed will be out of focus, even if it's just behind the model. 

Experiment with different focal lengths and their effects to see what you can fulfil – you can create some fun effects with wider lenses, too, such as shooting from above the subject to give the effect of zooming upwards, with micro feet, and getting your model to hold their hand out, so it appears massively larger than the body. 

Tamron lenses are ready in the UK through Intro2020. 


About the author

Gina Stephens

Gina Stephens

Gina is a photography enthusiast and drone lover who loves to fly drones, capture images and have fun cherishing them with family and friends.

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