Forums > Critique > Serious Critique > Request for a full portfolio critique


Second Nature Photos

Posts: 52

Murfreesboro, Tennessee, US

First off, I want to say thank you in advance for anyone who critiques my portfolio. I'll take any advice I can get at this point. I'm not really getting anywhere from friends on facebook saying "oh that looks really good" to everything I post.

At this point in my photography I'm mostly taking pictures on a TFP basis and most have been with more photogenic friends of mine as well as classmates. All the pictures in my portfolio are taking with very little lighting assistance, fill flash at most. Very basic in that regard. I'm mostly focussing on portraiture right now cause that seems to be the most lucrative and expansive type of photography, and it's what I enjoy most.

That said, any advice or critique is welcomed.

Here's the link

Oct 31 12 01:10 pm Link


AYC Photo

Posts: 122

Seattle, Washington, US

Use a single strobe and try to recreate some of the classics. Paint with the light to give the image depth.

Oct 31 12 01:15 pm Link



Posts: 293

Saint Petersburg, Florida, US

It is a start.  Look at images you like and try to recreat them.  Visit YouTube... lots of videos on photo techniques, posing, etc. ALL say the most important thing is GO OUT AND SHOOT SOME MORE... :-)

Oct 31 12 01:27 pm Link



Posts: 1786

Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

Read up on composition (I consider composition the most important aspect in photography as it represents your raw artistic vision) and then on lighting. Don't worry about buying books right away, there is enough free stuff online to get you started.

Composition basics:
For portraits, try shooting portrait (vertical) over landscape (horizontal). Models heads and bodies are better suited for vertical shots for the most part.
Google the rule of thirds, it is important. Even if you want to be original and break rules, the rule of thirds greatly affects the entire feel of a photograph.
Study great images and poses, it helps you get started smile

Oct 31 12 01:56 pm Link


Second Nature Photos

Posts: 52

Murfreesboro, Tennessee, US

Ok, Thanks for the imput everyone.

You keep mentioning that I should look at the classics and get my inspiration from there. But what exactly are those? I've never really learned much about photography history.

Oct 31 12 02:23 pm Link



Posts: 37171

Columbus, Ohio, US

Your composition is just not there at any level.

Google might be your friend, if you can seperate the wheat from the chaff.  It's not something that can be explained easily in just a couple short paragraphs.

Oct 31 12 03:46 pm Link


Warren Leimbach

Posts: 3068

Tampa, Florida, US


This image is a good start - it has something more to it than just "pretty girl".  Pay attention to what you did here with your composition and choice of lens, the model's interaction with the camera and the way the background blurs out bringing your attention to the face.   (The super saturated colors are probably not helping, IMHO.  But still this is your most interesting shot.)

The other images are not so strong and ultimately should be replaced as you shoot new material.

Nov 02 12 08:40 am Link


David Kirk

Posts: 4830

Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

Indiesent Exposure wrote:
Ok, Thanks for the imput everyone.

You keep mentioning that I should look at the classics and get my inspiration from there. But what exactly are those? I've never really learned much about photography history.

If portrait is your target then you can start by checking out the likes of classic masters such as Yousuf Karsh and Irving Penn.

Nov 02 12 09:36 am Link



Posts: 9764

Minneapolis, Minnesota, US
Build a base or platform on which to support the models head, in this image she is just floating in space
Over half this image is not occupied by the model
Ear is distracting, cover with hair or move behind block wall
Please show me those beautiful blue eyes
Notice in this image how you build a platform to rest the head on
[Triangle formed by shoulders]
Think about re-cropping this image
[Crop to models left of dress strap models right shoulder, then to remove green area just at models left shoulder]
Nice background blur by the way
Very distracting background
Strange arm posing
Do not loose the hands, but loose the background include the feet
Get Down!
Get level with your subjects eyes try not to shoot down on them

Wish you well

Nov 02 12 11:15 am Link


Coyote Creations NW

Posts: 132

Vancouver, Washington, US

Most portraits depend on making a viewer see the model's eyes.  Focus to make the eyes as sharp as possible.  Don't let hair, hands or anything obscure the eyes.  I suggest working on lighting as your next step.  Fill flash alone close to the camera axis will give you even, flat lighting.  Most great portraits have at lease a full stop difference in light across the face.  In some cases, much more.  A strobe may be a little harsh unless you have modifiers.  A reflector can be more flattering outdoors, and they can be inexpensive or even improvised.  Keep shooting, you'll begin to see it.

Ps I once spent an afternoon shooting 200 plus pictures of a basketball while I moved strobes around to see the effect.  Try some focused experiments.

Nov 10 12 07:06 pm Link