If there is one thing I always aim for when I am taking portraits it’s catchlights. And although it’s not always a possibility when you’re documenting life as it happens, there are some things you can do to create amazing catchlights in your portraits.
First of all, I should answer this question: what exactly are catchlights?? Catchlights are the reflection or highlights in the eyes from the light source– i.e- sparkly eyes!! Having catchlights in your subject’s eyes gives life to your image and your subject.
5 ways to create amazing
catchlights in your portraits
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- position your subject in open shade, facing the light.
- you can easily create the same effect indoors. simply position your subject facing an open door or window that is letting in light. just be sure to make sure the light is soft and not creating harsh shadows or shapes on your subject– unless of course, you’re trying to do something fun with the light (that’s something totally different though! ha!) check out these pictures of my cuties on our trip last year to myrtle beach– we had a blast! if you’ve never been you should totally check out 3 myrtle beach, sc adventures! sorry, i get a little sidetracked sometimes!
- Use a reflector. Sometimes you want to use light behind your subject, or the option to turn your subject to the light just isn’t there. In cases like those, you can use a natural reflector- sand, snow, water, a white shirt on the photographer, or light bed sheets can all act as a natural reflector. I am personally not a fan of relying on a ton of equipment, apart from my camera and lens, to photograph my children. I love the fact that there are so many natural things that act as a reflector.
- Lay your wild thing down and tell them to face the sky. Obviously, depending on your lighting situation you could end up with a squinter, so you have to be a little careful with this one, but given the right circumstances, this is golden!
- Try shooting on a cloudy day. Just take a peek at those eyes before snapping away and see if you see some of those amazing catchlights. If not, then try facing your subject a different direction! Now, go forth, and capture some images of your wild things with those super awesome catchlights! If you’re new here and wondering what i used to create the above images, check out what’s in my bag!
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