Tips for Achieving Tidy and Organized Portrait Compositions

How do you make clean compositions when you’re in a messy space? This is a challenge all wedding photographers face because bridal prep seldom refers to the bride. Grandmas, moms, and bridesmaids are all likely to get ready at the same time in the same space. This is inevitably the need for an appropriate word, a messy space. Make-up brushes hair dryers, makeup brushes spare clothes. It’s all there. is likely to be found on the floor or work surfaces. How do you get rid of the debris and produce beautiful photos?

This article we’ll look at three tricks and tips that you can try to produce clean images and hide ugly objects.

Unwanted clutter on the scene Canon EOS 6D + EF35mm f/1.4L USM @ 35mm, ISO 500, 1/125, f/2.8

The Phone Mirror

It’s a part of modern life It’s a fact that I don’t leave my home without my cell phone. To avoid embarrassing moments during the ceremony I always turn off my phone at the beginning of each day. Given the weight of bags for cameras can be and how much it weighs, streamlining your bag can be beneficial, and any additional kit is dead weight. Fortunately, a mobile phone is able to make a profit by acting as a reflective object to assist you in reorganizing your shots.

Canon EOS 6D + EF35mm f/1.4L USM @ 35mm, ISO 500, 1/125, f/2.8

The photo above was shot in a hotel room adjacent to the room where the bridesmaids and bridesmaids of the bride were getting dressed. This is a wonderful illustration of how an empty room is still full of undesirable objects. The window to the right provides the primary lighting source. As can be seen in the first image the bed blocks an uncluttered shot, and the background is distracting. What do we do?

Making use of the mobile device to mirror the gown in this manner, it eliminates the background. In this situation it is also beneficial that the angles of the phone help keep the focus at the center of the image, which puts attention on the dress and not other. In addition, because it’s reflective light, it will be more intense than the subject which means that the viewers eye is not diverted from the primary object of the photograph.

using the floor-2
Canon EOS 6D + 50mm @ 50mm, ISO 200, 1/160, f/1.8

Of course, if you are in doubt, consider using the floor for background, expose the highlights and then convert it into black-and-white. A quick, unobtrusive background permitting the dress to be the center on the stage (shooting with big apertures is also helpful)

Lens Chimping

I first came across this technique via Samuel Hurd’s blog. Sam is extremely creative and constantly invents innovative ways of changing and enhancing his photographs. What makes him distinctive is the fact that he shares everything free on his site. Each of his tricks and methods are explained thoroughly and thoroughly covered. I highly recommend it to you.

Canon EOS 6D + 50mm @ 50mm, ISO 400, 1/160, f/1.8

The lens Chimping technique uses lenses to create a distorting light source and make the background appear out of focus, and produce intriguing light distortions and flares. Any lens element that is convex can be used. Concave lenses can be a good option, however I’m not sure if I’ve tried it. Simply put the element to the front of your lens, and then move it slightly towards one direction, then rotate across multiple axes until get a good result.

I’ve observed that the best results are obtained by focusing, changing the composition, and then introducing the lens to cause distortion. In other words it is possible that your automatic focus system is likely to be confused and start looking for a focal point. The technique can be employed to blur the background or, if pointed directly towards a light source for creating interesting orbs of light in order to create a more dynamic image.

Canon EOS 6D + EF35mm f/1.4L USM @ 35mm, ISO 500, 1/125, f/2.8

I’ve demonstrated Lens Chimping using the same dress that I showed earlier. We can clearly see how the lamp at the desk appears by an angle lens that is concave. The distractions and clutter in the background are removed of view and what remains is a fascinating distortion of light.

Canon EOS 6D + 50mm @ 50mm, ISO 1600, 1/60, f/1.8

My second favorite application for this technique is during the initial dance. Based on the form that the floor is it isn’t easy to set up your lighting to be) in a place that looks attractive in both directions, and) in a place in which guests won’t fall over light stands in the dark. This is why I usually set up light stands close to the booth of DJ. The only caveat to this is the fact that DJ will usually be behind the image.

By using the lens chimping method it is possible to blur the DJ, get some nice lens flare and also capture the initial dance in the lighting configuration I’d like. It’s not easy but it does require some practice. It is quick focus on, changing focus and adding the convex lens into one swift movement takes some time to get used to.

I’d recommend that anyone practice this at home with a friend who can be still for a bit. When you’re done, you’ll be able to capture one of your most memorable first dance photos. If you don’t, your lens will be white all over the frame, so you shouldn’t take chances with it.


Freelensing is an DIY project that is less “out of the box option compared to the other two methods. The idea behind freelensing is to provide an alternative that is much less expensive than tilt-shift lenses. I’m using the Canon 50mm f/1.8 for freelensing, that costs around $125. When you consider that it is the Canon 45mm tilt-shift is more expensive at $1400 this is a less expensive alternative. If done correctly there’s no noticeable decrease in image quality.

There are numerous YouTube videos that explain how to remove the back casing off of an optical prime lens to freelens it. You can also watch watch this video by Sam Hurd, in which he describes the procedure with an Nikon lens. It is important to know that you will require an camera with live view. This allows the rear lens element to get close to the sensor for an impact that is visible.

Canon EOS 6D ISO 100, 1/250

The basic idea behind tilt-shifting is to rotate and shift the lens plane with respect to the plane of image. Instead of focusing falling off from behind and in front of subjects, tilt-shift is able to be altered to fall off from any angle. A fuller explanation of this process is available on this page.

What we must know about this method is focus dropoff will allow us to determine which portion of the background will be focused. When it comes to weddings, this can be extremely beneficial to create crisp photos. The main flaw, and most difficult thing to overcome is that you have none control of the aperture other than if it’s an older lens equipped with one. Setting the aperture to f/1.8 is great as the live view appears nice and bright. But, you must be certain that your image is properly focused. Personally, I’m required to wear contact lenses, otherwise it’s not an option.

The method is most effective when used with still objects, therefore I would suggest picking a spot in the bridal preparations where the bride is still. Applying mascara and eyeliner are usually the best time to apply. Begin with live view and then tilt the lens in order to keep the eyes sharp. Then, let all other things to go away. As you gain confidence and comfortable, you can expand the distance between you and your subject. I would suggest starting out close since it can take some time to get used to.

Once you’ve mastered it, freelensing can be used in various shots throughout the day. Couple portraits are the most effective opportunity, since you can instruct your couple to stay still. The more you pull back and backwards, the more dramatic your effects can be. I especially like the larger images, because the corners start to swirl that draw the eyes to the middle in the image. Test it out for yourself.