Portrait Photography Fundamentals


Portrait Photography Fundamentals


Lesson Info

Theatrical Post-Processing

You know what's so funny is that I started my teaching career actually teaching post processing. I had one person come the very first class and then I started teaching post processing and I did that and then I started to edit people's images and I go, "You know what? "I need to teach 'em how to be better photographers first." (laughs) And I haven't come back to post processing since. But I'm excited about it and like terrified at the same time because I have like so many ideas on it. And I love it actually, I have a passion about it. I'm one of those guys that could just sit there for two hours on an image but enjoying it, right? Not the like thousands of images that you gotta get through when you're editing a wedding but the ones that you really like and you pull those aside, and you know why? It's really completing you vision and expanding your creativity. So I don't see Photoshop, I mean, yes it's correcting things, it's getting rid of elements and doing that but to me the reason wh...

y I get excited about it is it just expands your vision and you can take it to a place that's like, wow, that nobody can recreate. In fact, I can't even recreate most of my images. The longer that I spend on it the more I can't recreate it. I know the general philosophies behind how I got there but because it's like you go down this path and it's like a thousand different steps that you do to get that image. How can you remember every single one of them? You can't but there's general things that I do. There's certain presets that kind of give me that same look and I want to share those with you first, right off the bat, some of my kind of philosophies behind it that give me my signature style. How I get there is different every single time but this keeps me in line so I can make sure I have a particular style, so let's get to that. Theatrical Post Processing: Creating Impact and a Signature Style and that's what you really want to do is create impact and post processing allows you to create impact with your photos but you have to... Oh, before I get into that and I talk a little about post processing, it's kind of like life, right? So you can devote hours on an image and then you can trash it the next day. And that's like us with maybe certain relationships. We can go there for a long time, then you wake up one morning, you know what, I don't want to be with this person anymore. But was that a waste of time? Not really because even though that relationship didn't work out I still learned about life, I still learned about myself, you know. What I like, what doesn't work with me, whatever, right? So even though in the end you trash that you still learn something and that's the way it is with post processing so don't give up on the process. If you try and try and go, "I tried that, it seemed so easy "but I can't get anything near that," and you give up. Don't, it's still there, still have hope in there and still realize that that can expand your vision. And you're gonna learn something every time you do it even if it's a failure but it's like anything in life. You just keep devoting time to it and you get better and better and better and sometimes the things that we actually hate, and I know some of us have been through this, we end up loving, right? We say that about our kids. (laughs) Okay, so every moment we spend post processing the more we learn about our art, okay? And so you start post processing and go, "You know what, I notice I do that "with the hand every time, why do I do it?" You know, you start to see kind of your good habits and your bad habits and it helps you. So the more time you're with your images the more you're gonna find out about yourself and improve yourself. So nothing is wasted, okay; nothing is wasted. Okay, so eventually at the end of the day we want to create a few images that are lasting and we feel great about. And those images I guarantee you... You know, I go in workshops and people are shooting over my head and using my lighting system and everything and they, whoo, think they come up with a great image but actually I created everything for them. You know, that's great I can in the beginning and they kind of like that image. But in the end, they like the image that they created, the one they had a vision for. And so it's where you put the most vision, thought and devotion in, that's where your love is. That's where you passion is, that's you. That's your soul. And what you want is your soul to come out in your imagery. And that's not easy, man. That takes hours and hours and hours of dedication of learning lighting, post processing, composition. The whole thing, man. But when you do it, it's like you know, it's like, I don't know why I'm getting so emotional because when you do it and it's your art, it's like you're giving birth to something that is you, some beauty that represents you that somehow you did it that way. And that's really what we're going for here. So aside from all the post processing stuff that I'm gonna show you and all that, that's the thing that I really want you to remember.

Class Description

Want to be able to go into any situation with your camera and have the confidence to know you’ll get the shot? Award-Winning photographer Scott Robert Lim goes in-depth on the four foundational elements you must conquer if you want to develop your creativity and style.

Scott will give you the guidelines you need to master:

  • Lighting
  • Posing
  • Composition
  • Post-Processing

Once you master these fundamentals of portraits, you free up your mind to get creative and ultimately get the shot.


1Class Introduction
25 Shots That WOW
3Four Fundamentals of Photography
4Create a Visual Impact with Composition
5Importance of Foreground and Background
6Create Depth in Landscape Images
7Photos Don't Always Follow the Rules
8Composition Practice Exercise
9Composition Critique of Student Images
10Keys to Posing
11Shoot: Classic Elegance Female Pose
12Shoot: Modern Female Pose
13Shoot: Rollover Female Pose
14Female Hands & Arms Poses Overview
15Shoot: Hands and Arms Poses for Female
16Seven Posing Guidelines
17Headshots Poses with Male Model
18Shoot: Headshot for Male Model
19Shoot: Sitting Poses for Male Model
20Shoot: Leaning Poses for Male Model
21Shoot: Standing Poses for Male Model
22Keys to Couples Posing
23Shoot: Couples Posing
24Couples Transitional Posing Overview
25Shoot: Transitional Posing
26Keys to Group Posing
27Accordion Technique with Groups
28Shoot: Accordion Technique
29Shoot: Best Buds Pose
30Shoot: Talk with Your Hands Pose
31Shoot: Lock Arms and Hold Hands Pose
32Run at the Camera and Dance in Your Seat Poses
33Shoot: Pod Method Pose
34Posing Critique of Student Images
35Introduction to Lighting
36Soft vs Hard Light
37Difficult Lighting Situations
38Bright Light Techniques
39Overcast Light Techniques
40Low Light Techniques
41Lighting Techniques Q&A
42Drama Queen Lighting
43Laundry Basket Lighting
44Make it Rain Lighting
45Smart Phone Painting with Light
46Mini LED Bokeh Lighting
47Choose the Right Lighting System
48Hybrid Flash System
49Innovative Accessories
50Gear Overview
51Theatrical Post-Processing
52Ten Keys to Post-Processing
53Essential Skills to Post-Processing
54Headshot Post-Processing
55Bright Light Post-Processing
56Flat Light Post-Processing
57Low Light Post-Processing
58Introduction to Fine Art Post-Processing
59Light & Airy Fine Art Post-Processing
60Dark & Moody Fine Art Post-Processing
61Post-Processing Critique of Student Images