I love simplicity in my portraits. I love plain backdrops that are either one solid color like this black v-flat or a mottled, a hand-painted canvas backdrop, or one of my new favorites: a crisp, white, paper backdrop. The reason? Because then there are absolutely no distractions from the person in front of my lens. In fact, I try to ensure this simplicity through every aspect of the portrait experience. During the consultation is usually when I address this.
When we’re talking about what to wear, I encourage everyone to steer clear of patterns like checkers and florals. I also strongly discourage logos or graphic t-shirts unless you feel that it says something very specific about you. Part of it is because I want this portrait to be timeless for you. I don’t want you to look at it in ten years and regret how trendy you were. Avoiding patterns is particularly important when more than one person is being photographed like in the case of a family. Clashing patterns can be a huge distraction to the human eye and faces certainly won’t be the first thing to draw your attention in that image.
But there’s no need to be bland! Personally, I love the clean look of everyone in a white top and denim bottoms, but if you’re really concerned about your portrait been monotonous then texture is your beat friend. Choose pieces that are a solid color but maybe one person wears a chunky knit sweater while someone else dons a smooth leather skirt. Because photography is all about the relationship between light and shadow, your portraits will be much more dynamic if you include different textures rather than different colors.
Location: Wiscasset, Maine.