It is true that the team influences when it comes to achieving clarity in an image, but you should not obsess over that subject unless your bread and that of your family depend on it. One does not make better photos because they are sharper. In fact you can capture an extremely sharp image and totally lack interest. If it is “empty” it will go unnoticed in the eyes of anyone. That’s why you should not worry about changing equipment, take advantage of what you have and make the most of it, change only when you really need it. To get the most out of what you have, keep it clean (it’s time to give it a review), use a fixed lens if you have it, configure the parameters of your camera well (later I’ll explain how) and follow the steps below.
For a clear portrait you will need a good light and I do not mean the intense light of midday. I mean an adequate light. I always advise you to throw in natural light whenever possible, however, today, as we are trying to achieve maximum clarity, I will tell you that if you have a flash (or more than one), that you use them, you will not try to close doors, but to open them. If you have a beauty dish, a light window or a flash of hand, use them to illuminate your model and get more sharpness. If you have several of these elements, you can combine them and play with them to achieve the result that most satisfies you. Here is a guide to illuminate your portraits.
3. Camera configuration
Adjust the sharpness. Your camera should become an extension of your body, ideally you get to know it so well that you do not have to look in the menu or think much where the buttons are and that is achieved with practice. Maybe you do not know but there are some functions that allow you to adjust certain parameters such as sharpness or contrast. If you have not already done so, it’s time to read the instruction manual. Do different tests until you give the combination that you like.
Minimum ISO. Put the ISO value at 100, the lowest, in this way you will avoid that annoying noise that dirties the images. There are some cameras that work very well with higher ISO values, if you have to upload it do it, you know the limit of your camera, but do not exceed it, because it’s about achieving very clear portrait …
Beware of the ISO value
Beware of the ISO value
RAW. If you are looking for sharpness, you will have to work in RAW and if you do it in JPG, try to use a JPG quality format, which compresses very little, the more you compress the image, the more information you lose and that translates into … less sharpness, exactly!
Work with high speeds. It uses fast shutter speeds, although you’ll have to compensate to find the ideal balance between the three fundamental ingredients of the triangle of light, (ISO, speed and aperture).
Intermediate openings We are many lovers of large openings, especially in portrait, it allows highlighting the subject, or a part of his face and blur the rest. What happens in these cases, is that if you use a very wide opening you will only get a minimum focused part (for example, the eyes yes and the nose does not), in addition, the objectives have their maximum performance in terms of sharpness in intermediate openings. Know the sweet spot of your goal and work with it to achieve sharper portraits.
Manual approach. It’s time to make another change, focus manually. If you already do it, fantastic, you have a long way traveled and if you have not dared yet, start practicing.
Autofocus If you do not dare with manual focus, you do not have time or any other excuse that you can think of or introduce yourself, use the “AF-S” (Nikon) or “One Shot” (Canon) mode, ideal for static subjects.
If you have focus accessories, use them.
Avoid filters. Especially with automatic approaches, because the filters prevent a good focus and reduce sharpness, especially if they are not of the best quality.
Make a precise focus It is not about focusing the face (unless it is a full-length portrait from a distance), which should be well focused (yes or yes, as long as you do not look for a concrete effect) are the eyes. You can have a very clear portrait but if the look is out of focus, moved or blurred … it will lose a lot of strength.
One of the biggest enemies of sharpness is movement, so you should avoid it at all costs. On the one hand ensuring that your model is static and on the other hand minimizing any vibration of the camera, how?
Use a tripod. If you can, do not hesitate. It is true that when making a portrait, unless you are in a studio, the tripod is not the best companion, but it will be an excellent ally to get more