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How to do a Silhouette Photo | Amy Atkins Photography Tutorials

The beauty behind a silhouette can evoke emotion almost like a story that isn’t fully painted…but fully conveyed. The emotion can come through in the mystery of the shadow.

This is how you do it!

You need to have a camera where you can do all of the settings manually. That mean, you can set the aperture, the shutter speed, and the ISO individually.

Next, you need a location with a strong horizon. You can imagine – the top of a mountain, a field, or a clearing where there are not a lot of trees in the way. We want to see the sky!

The best time to do it is just before sunset. Use a sunset calculator like this one to figure it out.

You need a large depth of field (where the background is more in focus) so adjust your aperture to a larger number between f/8.0-f/16.0.

Next, set your ISO to 100.

Lastly, it’s time to play with your shutter speed. This will truly depend on your available light so there isn’t a magic number here.

Start at around 1/1000.

Position your subject – get down low and angle up if you need to. Use the open sky to frame in your subject.

Take your shot. Preview.

Now, if the subject is too light just adjust your shutter speed higher, say, 1/2500. Take the shot again and repeat until your subject is dark enough for your taste.

Now, if the whole picture is too dark, imagine what you would do…Right. You would take the shutter speed lower. (remember the 1/1000 mean one one-thousandth of a second. 1/800 is slower = more light gets in. 1/2500 is faster = less light gets in)

The more you play, the easier it gets.

Thank you for viewing! Let me know if you have any questions:


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