APOY 2016 Round 3 : Soul Love - Portraiture. Win a Sigma dp1 Quattro compact camera and a VF-31 optical viewfinder in this month's round

APOY 2016 logo 350

 

APOY 2016 Round 3: Soul Love – Portraiture

***Please visit the APOY 2016 home page to find all the rules for entry, terms and conditions, the APOY ENTRY EMAIL ADDRESS and the disclaimers that must be copied and past into an email entry.

Entries must be received midnight (UK time) on  30 May 2016 (extended by a day due to the bank holiday)

Portraits are not the easiest things to master. There are expectations attached to portraits that can be somewhat intimidating. Drawing out the hidden qualities and character of an individual is not always easy.

APOY 2016 Round 3 : Soul Love - Portraiture

This image by Betina La Plante perfectly demonstrates the expressive qualities of combining low-key lighting with black & white

There are a number of things to consider, such as ensuring the correct focus and making sure your images are not full of superfluous background detail that fights with your photograph’s subject for attention.

Great portrait subjects can be found in all walks of life, from family and friends to your local shopkeeper and even strangers. There are no stipulations in this particular round as to how your images must be taken. You can employ both natural and artificial light, so if you’ve been avoiding getting to grips with your flashgun, this could be the round to get a little brave.

As always, we have excellent prizes to give away.

This month’s prize

APOY Portraiture

Sigma 85mm f:1.4 EX DG HSM lens and EF0610 DG ST electronic flash

 

The winner of this round of APOY 2016 will receive a Sigma 85mm f/1.4 EX DG HSM lens.This large-aperture medium telephoto lens, optimised for use with digital SLR cameras, features a focal length of 85mm, ensuring a natural perspective. The large aperture of f/1.4 is especially ideal for portrait and low-light photography. When used on digital cameras with an APS-C-sized imaging sensor, the lens effectively becomes a 127.5mm f/1.4 lens. The Sigma 85mm f/1.4 is equipped with a rear-focus system that minimises fluctuation of aberration caused by focusing. The Super Multi-Layer Coating reduces flare and ghosting, even in backlight photography.

The winner will also receive an EF-610 DG ST electronic flashgun. With a GN (guide number) of 61m @ ISO 100. This flash is designed to work with the latest TTL auto exposure systems of all popular digital and film SLRs.

That’s a total prize value of £1,059.98 for round three of APOY 2016.

We take a look at some tips and tricks to set you on your way to shooting confident portraits

Colour and Monochrome

APOY 2016 Round 3 : Soul Love - Portraiture

Colour and Monochrome – photo by Jennifer Ann Peel

Colour and black & white can bring many things to a portrait, and often which one you choose can depend on the light. Low-key lighting works well with black & white. The film noir aesthetic can add real drama. If you’re working with high-key lighting such as bright sunlight, you may find that your image benefits from the bright vivid colours.

The Right Lens

APOY 2016 Round 3 : Soul Love - Portraiture

The Right Lens – photo by Annabel Williams

Portraits lend themselves to fast telephoto prime lenses, with 85mm a popular choice for full-frame shooters, 50mm on a cropped sensor and 42.5mm on a Four Thirds camera. The fast maximum apertures offer plenty of control over depth of field, allowing you to blur the background and isolate your subject.

Window Light

APOY 2016 Round 3 : Soul Love - Portraiture

Window Light – Photo by Martin Williams

One of the most interesting ways to achieve a natural-light portrait is by working with window light. The tip here is to always remember to expose for the brightest areas of your subject to avoid blowing out the highlights. Also, remember to turn off any artificial lights in the room, particularly when you’re working in colour, as correcting varying colour temperatures can be a nightmare.

On the Streets

APOY 2016 Round 3 : Soul Love - Portraiture

On the Streets – Photo by Oliver Atwell

Usually, the idea of street photography is to blend in to capture those candid moments that may otherwise pass us by. However, on this occasion it may be worth taking a different approach. Asking to take someone’s portrait may take many of you out of your comfort zone, but just the simple act of asking can lead to excellent results.

***Please visit the APOY 2016 home page to find all the rules for entry, terms and conditions, the APOY ENTRY EMAIL ADDRESS and the disclaimers that must be copied and past into an email entry.

Entries must be received midnight (UK time) on  30 May 2016 (extended by a day due to the bank holiday)

 

APOY 2015