The Easiest Way for You to Practice Portrait Photography

As a portrait photographer, I often struggle to create new work. To add a new image to my portfolio, I must involve at least one other person who will be photographed by me. Contrast this to a landscape photographer, who can get into her vehicle, drive to a cool shooting location any day she desires, and create new images with relative ease.

In the video above, photographer Laura BC offers a solution for portrait photographers who want to create new work more easily: she suggests photographing yourself. Laura first began taking photographs over a decade ago when she photographed surfers. It was easy for her to create new work because she could show up on the beach and shoot images without setting up a formal session with another person. However, Laura was intrigued by portrait photography. She photographed models for a while, but she did not enjoy the hassle of booking models for shoots, so she began taking photographs of herself. Today, she has a strong portfolio that includes several self-portraits.

In the video, Laura details how she photographed a high-key self-portrait. The cost of creating the shot was minimal. She used white paint and sunglasses as props and lit the image with diffused natural light. The shot was captured on an 8-megapixel Canon 30D. Despite the photograph being created without the use of models or a glam squad, the photo was licensed by a makeup company.

Some photographers may be hesitant to photograph themselves. Many of us have taken up positions behind the camera for the very reason that we are uncomfortable being in the spotlight. Laura suggests keeping in mind that you can use yourself as a model to improve your skills as a photographer, but you don’t have to show the final images to anyone else. Best of all, you can schedule a photoshoot any time you desire without spending time finding or booking a model.

Check the video for more insight from Laura.

John Ricard's picture

John Ricard is a NYC based portrait photographer. You can find more of Ricard’s work on his Instagram. accounts, and

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