Five quick tips for natural light portrait photography

Continuing our quick and to the point tips series here are 5 tips for improving your natural light portraits. Natural light can be so rewarding to shoot with but also challenging. Once you master it its hard to think of any other way to shoot...


  • Look for the right light: Soft, diffused light is best for portraits, so find an area with indirect natural light, such as an open shade or near a large window. Avoid harsh mid-day sun, as it will create deep shadows and squinting.
  • Use the golden hour: The golden hour, which is the hour just after sunrise or just before sunset, provides a warm and soft light that is ideal for portraits.

  • Pay attention to the background: Ensure that the background does not overpower the subject or contain distracting elements. Blurring the background by using a shallow depth of field can help draw attention to the subject.


  • Experiment with positioning: Try positioning your subject in different directions relative to the light source to see how it affects their features and creates shadows. Always watch how the light falls on the face of your subject. Try to keep it as even as possible.


  • Pay attention to reflections: Be mindful of any reflections on glasses or shiny surfaces that can detract from the portrait. Try adjusting the angle or position of the subject or the light source to minimise reflections.

Quick tips

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