When Taking Portraits or General Shots of a Particular Person Try to Locate Them in Their Natural Environment.
Oftentimes the scene or setting of the shot can add greatly to it. Having you subject located in their natural environment can go a long way in communicating more about the person. Conversely having the same person in a totally unreal environment can at worst create confusion but at least add nothing.
People in Portraits Don’t Necessarily Have to be Smiling. Nothing Says, “Amateur” Like a Big Cheesy Grin!
Take a look through the average friends and family photo album and notice how there is an insistence that in all posed photos everyone is supposed to be smiling. When you are taking portraits you are not looking for death glares and you are not looking for big cheesy smiles either. Try to engage the subject and grab those moments that say something about the subject.
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In Candid Photography the Keys Are Persistence and Quantity. Shoot Often and Keep Shooting.
Cartier Bresson was the king of candid photography. He would sometimes scout a location for days before he even took a shot. You may not have the time or inclination to do that but what you can do is look around to observe your environment and thanks to digital cameras, take a mountain of shots. Persist, you will strike gold eventually.