Tag: silhouettes

Shooting Silhouettes

Shooting Silhouettes

Hey guys, today I am going to share with you an awesome photography tutorial. Photographer Gavin Hoey shows us how to shoot silhouette photos, then use Photoshop layers to transform the image. Gavin gives us some great tips about shooting silhouettes on location, but during the day! He speaks about the importance of contrast, and the best times of day for optimal contrast. Early in the morning or late in the day when the sun is coming up or going down create the optimal lighting conditions for shooting silhouettes.

In the video Gavin shows us how to make these shots work during the middle of the day while the sun is shining. We are given tips about subject placement. When shooting silhouettes during the middle of the day, you can have your subject wear dark clothing. You can also have your subject use different props to make the photo pop. Props also allow the viewer to see a photograph and immediately recognize what it is by the form of the prop. In the video, he uses the example of a bicycle that has a unique and recognizable shape.

Placement of your subject and the use of props are two important tips for taking silhouette photos during the middle of the day. However using the correct camera settings to filter out some of the light and change the exposure are just as important. Gavin recommends using the following settings:

Shoot in aperture priority mode

  • f/5.6
  • 1/800th sec
  • 200 ISO
  • Exposure compensation  -2

Gavin then goes on to explain how the use of smoke and flash can add even more to a silhouette photo. A lot of the time we do not have access to smoke or flash, so we can take many images and Photoshop them together using different layers.

Using these silhouette techniques to shoot travel and landscape photos

You can apply these tips to landscape photography also. Since you will not have as much control, a bit more patience will be necessary. Personally I love taking silhouette photos while I am traveling, it has been the reason I got interested in photography in the first place.

I hope you can go take some of these tips and try them out next time you are taking pictures. You can find out more about why I started this blog, and what the goals and objectives for sharing my photography and tips are here.