As the weather gets cooler, it's nice to move the photo shoots indoors. Soon enough, the light will be too dim, even in the daytime to get a nice warm photo. The porch is a lovely place for natural light photography - usually for close cropped head shots... but today for a fully dressed set like something out of Teen Vogue:
A corner of the porch was readied during the afternoon. The old paint ladder was nabbed off Craigslist last summer for free. Clara the dress form came down from the craft room. The boot bench was tipped away from the wall to hold the birdcage. A few books from the shelves filled some empty holes. That hideous, nasty area rug came from Value Village a very long time ago for $5.00. Area rugs that are too hideous and nasty for your rooms are very good for fashion photography.
The vintage Union Jack flag is on loan from The Flag Shop in town. On loan, as in, if Saucy doesn't return it soon... it will be charged to the credit card. They didn't want to part with it and Veto didn't want to own it, so a loan worked out perfectly.
That fabulous chair? It's on loan from a department store. On loan, as in, Saucy put it on the charge card, brought it home for a photo and will be returning it tomorrow. They just don't know it's a loan. As far as they know, the chair will be just far too big for the living room. It just wouldn't have worked out anyway.
After school, when the late afternoon swings around to the south west side of the house, the light shines in perfectly for indoor pictures. Shooting in front of a window can be tricky... you want the light coming from behind and from side - but not directly behind your subject, it will blow out the image and your subject will be a dark blur.
Light from the side, slightly behind the subject, adds a nice "hair light" or "back light" and gives a diffused glow to the shot.
You can also use your on-camera flash to add some fill light but be prepared for it to give a less natural look to your shots.
Watch out for direct light on your lens - it can wash out your exposure or give you lens flare. Lens flare can be pretty cool... there's even a filter that gives the effect in PhotoShop, so when it happens to Saucy, she's okay with it. Sometimes, it's alright.
Today Loopy wore Darling's Grade 12 graduation gown layered with some inexpensive tulle to give it a modern twist and some body for photography. The velvet jacket came from Anthropologie years ago.
The cool ring was a Forever 21 find. It looks splashier than it really is.
If the sun moves quickly (and it does at this time of year) be prepared to shoot your subject from several angles to catch the light.
You'll need a little step stool or a short ladder.
Luckily, the porch has more than one light source - light streams in the windows not only behind Loopy to the left but also to the right since she's placed right in the corner. The light from the front window adds a "fill" light that softly diffuses harsh shadows.
Remember, shooting down on your subject is almost always universally flattering.