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Corrective Techniques for portraits

Here is the first part of my blog, which I promised will share here, this is a Exclusive Bobby Lane's Class.

The successful portrait photographer realizes that his principal aim is to obtain characteristic likenesses of his subjects. At the same time, however, he must temper reality with flattery. The portraitist does this combining judicious posing, suitable lighting, and appropriate choice of camera angle. Although each situation in portraiture is different from all the other, the following suggestions for corrective treatment are generally accepted. ( Thank you Bobby Lane)

Deep-set Eyes

Lower main light, use a low lighting ratio

Protruding Eyes

Have subject look downward

Heavy set Figure

Use short lighting, use low-key lighting, use dark Clothing, vignette shoulders and body, blend body with background tone.


Tilt downward by elevating bows slightly, adjust fill to side to minimize reflections,have subject raise or lower chin to move reflections, use small light source, or retouch.

Prominent Forehead

Tilt chin upward, lower camera position.

Long Nose

Tilt chin upward, face directly to camera, lower main light, lower camera position.

Narrow Chin

Tilt chin upward


Lower camera, flag light from head, no hair light, blend top of head with background tone.

Angular Nose

Minimize by turning face toward lens.

Broad Face

Raise camera, use short light, turn face to

Narrow Face

Lower main light, use broad lighting

Wrinkled Face

Use diffuse lighting, lower main light, use

Double Chin

Raise main light, tilt chin up, raise camera height

Facial Defect

Keep on shadow side

Prominent Ears

Hide far ear behind head, keep near ear in shadow, Use profile view.

Hope this gives some lighting lessons, still more to come if time permits.

Photo credits: Botsman, Creativei, Demarco, Dejan Lazarevic.

Your article must be written in English

April 23, 2009


Wow this is my first blog which is featured as useful blog. Thanks DT

April 09, 2009


Thanks for sharing. You are adding the science to the art of it... haha.

April 08, 2009


Cheers for these tips.. will defo come in handy!

April 08, 2009


Excellent list :-) There are so many good tips how to make people looked great in portreit. I have read some books and they are splendid, but what a great idea to have such a list - very practical, one can hang it in studio before all technics enters "in photographer´s blood"

April 08, 2009


wicked suggestions..and u call yr self an amateur?:PP

April 08, 2009


Great checklist! Thanks

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