Portrait photography is a highly popular genre of photography due to its mass appeal in capturing human emotion and character. This style of photography focuses on a single or a few subjects, while the setup is focused on enhancing individual features by using different lighting equipment, modifiers, backgrounds, etc. Portrait photography can be used for many events such as weddings, and it is also commonly used for editorials due to the level of creativity incorporated in the shot. Before you can start taking gorgeous portrait shots, you should stockpile the right equipment so you can shoot different styles of portraits, and we have some great recommendations for you below.            

Background

Backgrounds such as the PIXAPRO Impasto Textured Hand Painted Background can add a lot of character to any portrait and bring out the personality of the subject by adding texture do the short and invoking a sends off depth to the image. These backdrops are hand-painted by skilled painters on quality and heavyweight canvas, making them durable and dependable investments. This backdrop is ideal for portrait photography as it brings a unique touch to the shot.  

Lighting

Portrait photography can be shot with different types of lighting, depending on your shooting style. While natural light is capable of producing some excellent portrait charts, due to the lack of reliability, we recommend using artificial lighting such as studio flash and continuous lighting based on the set requirements.

The PIXAPRO CITI300 PRO is a battery-powered flash that can be used for portrait photography. The strobe comes with a lithium-ion battery that allows you to take up to 320 full-powered shots, but it can also be powered down to 1/256 of its full power in 1/10 stop increments for different light intensities. The light has super-fast recycle times ranging between 0.01 - 1.5 seconds, and it also comes with a built-in 2.4 GHz flash receiver that can be used with the ONE System flash triggers for remote usage. It also comes with a Godox accessory mount which makes it compatible with a range of light modifiers and accessories to enhance any portrait photograph.

The PIXAPRO GLOWPAD 450S is a LED light that produces light that mimics natural daylight, and it uses edge-lit technology for enhanced light quality that can be effectively diffused to produce lighting results similar to softboxes. The LED lights are flicker-free for added consistency, and it has a color accuracy index (CRI) rating of greater than 95, making it suitable for accurate color representation in portrait photography. The system is also noise-free and features a slim profile with a width of 5.5 cm while weighing 2 kg, making it highly portable. The light is easy to adjust due to its tiltable head and standard 5/8" mount making it compatible with multiple modifiers, which can make use of the dimming feature on the light to produce different lighting effects in portrait photography.

 

Softbox

The 30x140cm (11.8"x55.1") Easy-open Strip Umbrella Softbox features a unique opening mechanism, similar to that of an umbrella, that offers quick and simple assembly on shoots. The softbox features a silver interior which is reflective to make sure that lighting is spread around the interior properly to reduce any loss of light. Also include are two layers of diffusion to help soften the lighting and reduce unwanted shadows, whilst allowing the light to fall gently onto the subject as well as a Honeycomb Grid to give a more narrow spread of light to focus better onto the subject and to prevent light falling onto the background.

Reflectors

The PIXAPRO collapsible 100x150cm 5-in-1 reflector can introduce different lighting effects, including tone, contrast, and shadow adjustment to produce specific portrait shots. This reflector model comes in different color options, including:

·         Black which is ideal for increasing contrast when shooting dramatic portraits

·         Soft gold which produces a warm light similar to daylight for highlighting the subject

·         Silver which is used to increase contrast, add highlights as it is highly reflective

·         Translucent which is used as a reflector, and it can also be used as a diffuser to soften harsh lighting

·         White which is used to produce a software light that maintains the color temperature of the lighting source

In addition to these multiple color options, the reflectors are highly portable and come with a grip handle for ease of control when using at any location.

Beauty Dish

The PIXAPRO 100cm silver interior beauty dish is a collapsible and detachable reflector dish that acts as a high-quality modifier capable of producing soft light for using portrait photography. The lighting is ideal for enhancing facial features and introducing details do any short. The beauty dish comes with a light bulb with a highly reflective silver interior that deflects light onto the subject by enveloping them in a diffused and gentle light. The beauty dish also comes with a diffuser cap that can further soften the light and eliminate any harsh shadows by mimicking natural lighting on your subject. A honeycomb grid is also included in the set for a more dramatic effect, and a Bowens S type fitting allows the dish to mount on your flash, strobe, speedlite, etc., for enhanced compatibility and use in portrait shoots.

Light Stand

The 161cm C-Stand with 20" Boom Arm, Detachable Base & Caster Wheels has a heavy-duty stainless steel frame with a shiny Chrome finish that can support weights up to 10 kg. This C stand can be used to hold Lighting equipment, light modifiers, scrims, and many other items essential for shooting a portrait. The setup comes with a 20" boom arm to mount light fixtures at different angles and even position them overhead. The detachable turtle base design makes it easy to transport the light stand, and the stand is placed on lockable caster wheels made of highly durable rubber, which keeps the stand in place while being used on different floor surfaces. 

Conclusion

Capturing portrait photography is as intimate as one can get in photography as an experienced photographer will be able to effectively capture expressions and the subject's personality. While this is a sub-field of photography that requires time and practice to perfect, having the right equipment can flatten the learning curve and take you one step closer to becoming an effective portrait photographer.