Catherine shows you her tips and tricks
Tips + Tricks
Quick Tip:Feed your creative juices! Creativity is like a muscle and needs to be exercised to stay in shape. Don’t just rely on photography to bring out your expressive side. Prioritize other activities that cultivate creativity so you are “in shape”. For me, dancing my butt off to house music does the trick. Petra Cross and I do it up at Kaskade!
Quick Tip: Paint the full picture! When taking portraits don’t forget to include their native environment. Incorporating your subject’s surroundings creates a story to accompany your subject.
Quick Tip: Locations often play a paramount role in the impact of an image. Search for backgrounds that complement the clothing and personalities of the couple. Don’t stick a conservative couple against a graffiti wall just to get your shot – it won’t resonate with them and you won’t create the best image of your clients.
Where is your favorite location to photograph a couple?
Quick Tip: Despite popular opinion, it is not always essential to shoot professional models. For many of my lifestyle shoots, I actually prefer to photograph real people. For example, in this shot for John Deere, I found that real people created a more authentic story/feeling.
What are you thoughts – do you prefer shooting real people or paid pros?
I once heard that when Sue Bryce photographs you, you become addicted. I wasn’t exactly sure what the meant. I mean – how do you become addicted to having your photograph taken? It is hard work to be a model – I can see it as thrilling, exciting, but addictive? Not so much. I ate my words on this one…
Those of us familiar with Sue Bryce and her stunning work understand that she has a way of transforming her subjects (see before and after). Most assume its Photoshop. I was guilty of this assumption – but, I didn’t care, I just wanted to look fabulous. However, Sue doesn’t use much Photoshop …. she doesn’t have too.
Sue is very meticulous. Hair and makeup have to be flawless – she is there the entire time to make sure there is no room for error. While shooting, she notices every single detail and is constantly coaching you with her soothing, yet oh-so-sexy Australian accent – is your jaw relaxed, is your chin forward & down (her most famous line), is your hand soft, is your collar bone popping just right, is your hair BIG enough, the list goes on. And, I am certain attention to all of these elements make her an astounding portrait photographer….but these are techniques and Sue Bryce’s skill supersedes mere technique.
Which leads us to why I am addicted to Sue Bryce and the greatest lesson she has taught me. It’s really quite simple…..Beauty. She makes you feel like the most beautiful, sexy, desirable, confident person on earth. She went beyond showing me in my best light, she actually allowed me to view myself in a new way. Now this is a gift, which, 10 months later, I am still riding the high of.
So this is one of the many things I have learned from Sue Bryce: Beauty is beyond the physical and radiates from all of us – sometimes we just need someone to coax it out. As a portrait photographer practice making your subjects feel like a million bucks, – the camera has a funny way of recording the non-physical.
The photo shoot was taken at the incredible Jade Studios in San Francisco, California. Clifford Hashimoto is a genius and a true master at hair and makeup, it was a pleasure to be able to be transformed by him! Want to hear more details about the shoot? Check out episode 28 of TWiT PHOTO with Sue Bryce.