As a completely self taught photographer, a lot of my growth and success in photography has come from being here…sharing all of my editorial images on the blog. Being on my campaign shoots as a model, and I learned a lot just by getting a closer look at what my photographer was doing. How they scout locations and lighting, how they position the models. Every aspect of my career has helped me discover my own eye as a photographer and my own unique shooting style. The beautiful thing about NATALIE OFF DUTY is I get complete control of every image I publish. The lighting. The location. The styling. The mood. When I’m traveling or working behind-the-scenes on some of my campaigns, I’m never without my Manfrotto Windsor Reporter camera bag. Manfrotto is famous for all of their professional camera equipment, and when I spotted this bag, I knew I had to have it for my daily use. I like to toy with my different lenses and DSLR cameras. Because who knows, maybe I’ll end up needing a special wide-angle lens for indoors. Or I’ll need that 50mm fixed lens and camera when I’m traveling and shooting portraits. But most importantly, it’s about getting the shot while having complete access to all your equipment. That’s when the Manfrotto Windsor Reporter camera bag comes out to play! It has just the right amount of protection I need for all my cameras, and is perfect when I’m on the go, grabbing street style and shooting. It’s also very utilitarian and has a sleek look, so it works well with a lot of my quirky ensembles.
But as most of you know, a lot of work goes into creating the perfect photo. With a lot of time and dedication, I’ve really gotten to find what makes a photo unique and special, how to find the perfect lighting, and how to set the mood with locations.
5 Outdoor shooting TIPS:
1. Always shoot in Manual mode. It gives you complete control over the lighting and mood of the photo or video you’re creating. With that, you can literally shoot in any type of lighting and create the perfect image.
2. Don’t be afraid of sunlight. Sometimes sunlight for me creates some of the most magical images. For beauty and skin photography, I love direct sunlight. It just makes everything really glow and pop, especially when you’re playing with colors and prints.
3. Do avoid a backlit area. A street may be completely gorgeous, but if there’s extremely harsh sunlight bouncing off the building behind you…simply turn around. Trust me, the lighting the other way will be magnificent and a lot more rich.
4. When in doubt, shoot in the shade. You really cannot go wrong with an overcast day in the shade. The light is naturally filtered so that whatever you’re shooting looks even more rich and clear.
5. Play with your depth of field. I love a lot of depth. Having a semi-blurred out background is professional, and allows the main focus to be on your subject.
6. Go for movement! I find that just a touch of movement. Like a flick of hair, or the wind blowing through the bottom of your skirt creates such dramatic photos. So don’t be afraid of movement, and a little blur. It definitely takes some practice photographing movement and having a steady hand.
5 Indoor shooting tips:
1. Try to grab as much natural light as possible. Move closer to a window if necessary! For me, I prefer natural lighting because of the way it makes the colors rich and vibrant.
2. Use a wide-angle lens. I love what a wide-angle lens can do to a room. You can capture so much more in a wide-angle lens in a beautiful indoor setting. It’s great for capturing architecture or home decor!
3. Flash. There’s something I really love about flash. It’s candid. It’s bold. It’s artistic. I love shooting really bright colors with flash indoors. It makes everything just pop.
4. Shadowing. The great thing about being indoors is you can really control the lighting, and shadows. It could be pulling down the drapes a little more for that dramatic shadow across someones face. Or getting that little peek of sunset to come through the window.
5. Making your own set. Sometimes I really just want a blank slate. A white wall. It’s chic and sophisticated and gives you a ton of freedom.
But my main shooting tip is to have fun with it. Some of the best images I’ve ever captures from my travels and adventures were candid. That’s what I love about my Manfrotto camera bag. I have everything I need. Just grab and go, and live in the moment.
Find more awesome camera equipment on Manfrotto.com