My Photography Assignment, Close-Up Portrait

My Photography Assignment Project

In this lens, I want to share some of my earlier project as a photography student. I joined a short course in this field about a year ago. My first assignment was to create a set of photos mainly focus on the close-up face of the subject. I found that it was quite interesting and fun assignment. I spent only about two hours for the photoshoot and another two hours for the editing part.

For this project, I submitted around twenty photos and I decided to share some of them in this article. I remember that my teacher gave me compliment for some of my works. Some of them were even also exhibited in the annual college exhibition. Please let me know your comments and opinions related to my work, as I believe it would help me to take much better pictures in future.

The concept and ideas

As this is one of my earliest assignment in photography class, I was instructed to focus on the technical aspect. My teacher wanted me to learn the basic concept of portrait photography. Thus, he asked all of the student to really pay attention to the focus. The focus must be on the eyes. The composition should be interesting, and we could use any post-processing software that we love.

I decided to create something more surrealist. I decided that for this assignment, there will be only three dominant color: black, white, and red. I was greatly inspired by Natalia Varzina’s works during working on this assignment and somehow she influenced me in a lot of aspects of this photographs.

My teacher told me that there should be at least two different expressions captured in this project. I decided that two of them are confusion and anger. I also experimented with different angles and perspective before finally being able to find the best angle that I wanted to capture. The process of the photoshoot was quite fun. It was considerably quick compared to my other shoot, as it took only about two hours, including the tea break time.

At that time, I was very inexperienced in working with model. I just instructed her to do the basic expressions such as smiling and frowning. During the two hours of work, I managed to capture around one hundred images. Among those, I selected the best twenty and edited in Adobe Lightroom.

The editing process was also quite fun. I was pretty relieved that I got the focus well. I decided to use manual focus, and since it was my first work where I fully used manual focus, I was kinda afraid that the result would be disappointing. As I mentioned before, I only included three major color in the final result of the images. All images should be in black and white, with little addition of red to make it more surrealist.

I submitted the work right after I finished the editing process. Although this assignment was not my best work, I feel pretty happy about them. I managed to get “pass” mark, and my teacher even complimented some of my photos. Somehow, working on this assignment gave me great spirit boost to create better photography works in future.

Some tips

I have several tips that might be useful for you, based on my experience:

Enjoy every moment of your work
This is the first principle that is applicable for any kind of work. In photography, you need to have passion and sincerity towards your concept. You should be able to enjoy every moment you work with your subject. By enjoying your time, you would be able to create some photos that is not only technically good, but also has strong emotional value in it.

Learn from the expert
My teacher told his students that we should spend at least a good one hour per day to take a look at the best works of professional photographers. By doing that, we would be able to learn the technical aspects as well as improving our eyes sensitivity. One most important thing, you should enjoy the learning process so that it has maximum effects in improving your skills.

Manual focus
From this photoshoot, I learned that manual focus works best for portrait photography. It may be difficult to adjust the focus at the first time, but once you are getting used to it, everything would be easier. Manual focus is always better than auto focus, as I believe that human eyes is much better than the artificial focus points in the most expensive camera in the world.

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