Hi, this is Jay P. Morgan. Today on The Slanted Lens I’m showing you how to create a silhouette. Your camera’s built-in meter makes it incredibly easy. I’m also going to spice up a silhouette I did recently to show you how you can do that. Silhouettes are a quick and easy way to add depth to your portfolio.
Silhouettes are darkened subjects against a brighter background. Your camera’s built-in meter will help you quickly and easily create a beautiful silhouette. Setting your meter to “spot meter” will allow you to choose the exact spot in your frame you want to expose for. If you use that to take a reading to correctly expose your subject, your background will be very bright. In the case of this couple and sky here, the sky went almost white. However, if you simply move your meter over to the sky and take another reading, you’ll end up with a correctly exposed sky and a silhouetted couple. Putting your camera in one of the priority modes makes this process even easier.
It’s also a great idea to add a graphic element to your frame. Below are some examples of this:
Another way I create silhouettes is by pulling my subject into the shade and letting the background blow out. I did this when I was photographing Lincoln out at Gettysburg:
After our typical silhouettes I wanted to spice things up a bit. I recreated a lamplighter scene, added some light back in, and of course had to have some smoke.
Silhouettes really are a great and easy way to add some depth to your portfolio. They are always popular with clients. Try them out and then post your favorites to our Facebook community group.
Keep those cameras rollin’ and keep on clickin’.
– Jay P.