Choosing a Setting & Background For Your Portrait Session

When discussing an upcoming portrait session with a client, one of the first questions I ask is always, "Have you thought about what background you might like"? That's because (aside from yourself) it's one of the most important elements of your portrait! There's a lot of thought that goes into picking the proper background since there are so many options that convey numerous, appropriate moods.

To help you pick the right setting for your portrait, I've broken down the main choices into three different categories: Studio, Nature, and Industrial.

Studio // Studio is the most basic option. It can fit any category of job; From makeup artist to lawyer to real estate agent, in the studio you can choose from a selection of colored backgrounds with gray & white being the most common. White gives a nice clean bright feeling while gray is an optimal option for those who want something clean & crisp, like white but not as bright. If gray and white are a little too "plain" for you, you can also pick a fun bright color! This works well for someone who has a creative or child-oriented job, like a graphic designer or daycare owner. Feel free to ask me what colors would work well for you if you choose to shoot in the studio!

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Industrial // Industrial is a popular option that includes backgrounds like brick, buildings, and stone. There's a lot of great options for these in Somerville and if we schedule it right, you can fit both studio & industrial photos in your session! Walls like brick, marble, and stone are another great option for non-specific industries. They're neutral enough that most professions & genders will look good in front of them and has the perfect combination of serious & friendly. If you want to add more depth to your photo, you can do full buildings or streets in the background, which I can make 'blurry' so you are still the main focus. This type of shot works best when the building behind you relates to your job, so perhaps buildings & streets for jobs associated with real estate or a court house for lawyers or paralegals.

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Nature // Nature isn't as common of an option, but is still one of my favorites! These backgrounds include flowers, trees, and grass. The job has to be right for a natural background. The best professions for this are, of course, people who work with nature & plants, creative jobs or jobs that want to show they're friendly and fun, so a lawyer or an financial advisor wouldn't be best for this.

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It all comes down to what emotion you want your portrait to convey. Want to show you're serious and down to business? A studio session with a neutral color should work best for you. Want prospective clients to think you're friendly and trust you with their children? A natural or a bright colored studio session may fit you best! Please feel free to ask me any questions you might have about choosing your background. I'm always more then happy to help you with a decision; After all, it's what I do!