Roger Hammons Photography LLC | The 10-Minute Portrait Challenge | Northern Virginia Portrait Photographer

The 10-Minute Portrait Challenge | Northern Virginia Portrait Photographer

March 28, 2017  •  Leave a Comment

Model & Actor Headshot | Northern Virginia Portrait PhotographerModel & Actor Headshot | Northern Virginia Portrait Photographer


At a recent portrait photography workshop, I was given the following challenge:  

In a tiny park that I'd never been to before, in the middle of a harsh sunny day, take a model I've never met before and, with just a camera (no auxiliary reflectors or lighting equipment), create a beautiful portrait before a 10-minute clock expired.    

No, it wasn't a photographer's performance anxiety nightmare.  It was a honest, real-life dare; and, I must confess, I started the challenge in fight-or-flight panic mode.  Hunting for a good location with beautiful natural light, I tried and quickly abandoned three different locations before settling on a far corner of the park offering a wee bit of tree cover.  

I felt that the location by the tree had potential -- the tree provided a posing aide, and the sunlight reflected from the tall building opposite that corner provided a quality of light I could potentially work with -- and, being short on time, I had to make it work.  The main problem was the harsh sunlight coming in from behind the model.  I solved that problem step-by-step (literally!), moving the model forward/backward/sideways and adjusting her pose to minimize the glare.  

Having solved the technical lighting and posing problems (at least until the sun moved!), I only needed a great expression from my model before time expired. Because she was an experienced model/actress, she could easily translate my cues and suggestions into a graceful look.  

The result was the beautiful portrait shown above.  

Despite my initial panic, the portrait was completed with 90 seconds still left on the clock!

Way to go, Roger!


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I'd love to take portraits of you and your family, especially if we can take our time and plan the portrait more leisurely!  Contact me today to chat about your family portrait needs.

My professional portrait photography studio is located in Ashburn, Virginia, just west of Dulles International Airport and north of the Brambleton shopping center.  Quick and easy! 







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