7 tips for capturing the perfect prom photo

Angle, poses and framing are just some of the tips for achieving the perfect, Instagram-worthy photo. Source: Shutterstock.com
Caption
Angle, poses and framing are just some of the tips for achieving the perfect, Instagram-worthy photo. Source: Shutterstock.com

Prom season has started, and you want to capture the magic of the moment.

Explore>> RELATED: 7 backdrops for the perfect prom photo in Dayton <<

Lisa Powell, who has been photographing for the Dayton Daily News and Cox Media Group Ohio for 17 years, offers these seven tips:

1. Photograph in good light.

“You need to look for soft light that’s not too shadowy, not too harsh,” Powell said. “Move your subjects into the shadow of a tree or a structure, so the light is more even. You don’t want harsh shadows falling on their faces.”

2. Pose your subjects.

“It’s nice to pose people in different heights if you have a group. Benches and stone walls would work,” Powell said.

3. Frame your shot.

“Fill the entire frame and get in close,” Powell said. “A tighter shot will feel more intimate.”

4. Use the rule of thirds.

One of the most basic rules of composition, the rule of thirds breaks down an image into nine parts (think of a tic-tac-toe board). The vertical and horizontal lines and the places where those lines intersect are sometimes the best places to put your subjects in. Many camera photo apps have these grids built in. “Not everyone has to be dead center,” Powell said. “Sometimes, if people are to one side of the frame, the composition is very pleasing.”

5. Spontaneity.

Candid photos can convey more warmth than posed shots, which often look stiff. “Catch someone during a hug or laugh,” Powell said. “Those emotions will be visual reminders in the future of the joy of the day.”

6. Angles.

Experiment with angles. “If you can get above and photograph the subjects when they’re looking up, that can add interest and be flattering,” Powell said.

7. Backgrounds.

A good background is sort of like the setting for a diamond ring – it helps show off your subjects. “Look for clean backgrounds, no telephone poles, signs or other things protruding from someone’s head or body,” Powell said.

Also, make sure there’s not a trash can, dumpster or porta potty in the background. You might not notice these things at first because you’re looking at your subject in a three-dimensional reality, but that reality is compressed into two dimensions in a photograph. That means things in the background will become more noticeable in an image.

About the Author