Another name for Silhouette lighting is Backlighting, this gives a dramatic effect, seeing only the outline of a figure makes it interesting. To take great Silhouette photo pictures make sure your background is brighter than your object. A certain amount of consideration must be given to the weather during any outside photo session.
If you have the fun of using a digital camera you have a lot of features that you can use, instant playback, memory storage, red eye reduction automatic flash, burst mode, optical zoom, and so many things to help you out. Blacked out images, Silhouettes, have been done throughout history, an image without color, it was once called. I’m currently 36 weeks pregnant and have been wanting to recreate this picture (scroll down a bit) from Kelly Hicks Photography for a while now. Every week I post a bump shot, but today’s 36 week photo got quite a bit of a response on facebook and instagram. You’ll need a window with natural light coming in, preferably with thin, white, or sheer curtains closed to filter the light slightly and create a soft glow. Prop up your camera on a box, dresser, or something across from your window so that it is at about shoulder height.
For me, I lined up the arm next to the window in line with my body so it didn’t show, and my hand closer to the camera on my hip, making sure that you could see the curve of my back clearly. Here’s the original (from Kelly Hicks Photography): Our editing style is a little different, but not bad for an iPhone camera!
Try it out for yourself, have fun with poses, or add your kids, pets, or family to the mix.
Also, THANK YOU for taking the time to read this! Since this was posted almost 2 years ago, I have heard from hundreds of moms who have used the tutorial with great success. I had no idea this post would still be popular so thank you for reading, pinning, trying it out, and sharing it with friends! I think this is the first Pin that I ever actually followed through on– and it worked GREAT! I followed your tutorial step-by-step and ended up with a beautiful photo that I will cherish forever. If you manage this site and have a question about why the site is not available, please contact us directly. A trip to the park at sunset created the perfect opportunity for me to work on my silhouettes.  In both these photos my kids are climbing up this really cool rope pyramid which they call the Eiffel Tower. A couple things I have learned about silhouettes is to make sure your background is brighter than your subject. The one thing about Montana come August we usually have Forrest fires in the surrounding areas. Silhouette photos are striking to look at and always linger a little longer in our heads after we’ve forgotten all the other photos. A close up silhouette makes a powerful image, for its isolation of the main subject from the background.
It’s like the opposite of taking a regular photo where you need to make sure there is enough exposure on the subject to review details.


About June JiangJune Jiang, owner of 365 Photography, is a Chicago based photographer specializing in wedding, portrait and fashion photography. Note: It is our responsibility to protect your privacy and we guarantee that your email address will be completely confidential.
Take any object and place it in front of the light set your camera to manual and allow your camera to focus on the light.
Technology practically does all of the work for you, but then, it never hurts to get a little help.
Before whipping out my fancy camera, I thought I’d see if I could get a similar look with my iPhone. It will take a whole bunch of pictures when the timer goes off and you can choose one to save to your camera roll from there. When I wrote it, I had taken my picture a few minutes before and had a lot of people asking for a tutorial, so I rushed to the computer and hurriedly wrote this post. I gave this my best shot in my little poorly-lit basement apartment and was pretty happy with the results even though it’s not exactly a silhouette.
I have been wanting to do a picture like this for quite some time and I am so thankful to have found this tutorial! I’ve always loved shots like this and it was very helpful knowing exactly how you made yours. This summer was no different, but definitely not as bad as past  years.  The  smoke still came and lingered in the valley for a bit. My friend’s Facebook profile was a silhouette photo of him and his wife kissing in the sunset, it stands out so much more. A small aperture creates a deep depth-of-field, so the silhouette shapes have a crisp outline. A wide shot, too, can be very effective in story-telling, as in the sample photo of elephants in sunset.
She had formal training in drawing, painting, photography, and graphic design, besides a background in science and technology. Force your camera to set its exposure based upon the brightest part of your picture, the background and not the subject of your image. Never point your camera at the sun the light might bounce back on your subject and ruin your Silhouette. While taking great Silhouette photo pictures don’t forget about the tripod, a handy little piece of equipment that keeps your photos steady at long distances.
When you are taking pictures with the automatic camera be sure to turn off the auto flash, you do not want it to automatically correct your shot. I have been using that app exclusively as a self-timer as Camera+ can take up a lot of space on your phone.
Point the back of the phone towards you, and look on the screen to try and get your window in the center.
Also play with how close or far away you are from the camera, 2 feet from the window seemed to be the best for me.
Get your phone ready, and TAP on the corner of the curtains or window in an area where you will not be standing.


When I was pregnant with P, my photographer took a silhouette shot of me during my maternity pics.
I edited mine a little different (like you said- do it how YOU like it) and I am just in love with the outcome. I’ve already shared your blog with a few pregnant friends that plan to use this tutorial when they get their full-term bumps!
The first time you position yourself in front of a sunset to take a silhouette you will see the sun sets faster than you think!
This picture below is unedited.  I was in the kitchen when I looked out the window and saw the sun was pretty close to setting so my daughter and I jumped in the car and drove to a near by park to take this picture. If taking night photos and no other light source is available, you can set up a flash unit on a light stand behind the subject. When using the camera meter as a reference, point the camera at the highlights in the frame. Therefore, you need to tap on the brightest spot in the frame, this tells the iPhone to treat highlight as mid-tone, which will result in a silhouette photo. Sunset is the preferred time for this type of shot because the sun is at a low angle and the sky is colorful, perfect for contrasting with the black silhouette. June is an avid writer of photography related subjects, she has also lectured on Photoshop topics to the local photography community. Many photographers take Silhouettes during the evening hours, when the sun is just above the horizon. While taking Silhouettes you will find yourself having to trick technology while using an automatic camera.
With a little bit of work, apps, and an iPhone camera (an outdated 4 at that ;)), this is what I got. The tilting and cropping help draw your eye to the person, rather than the bed or the laundry on either side of the picture. In this article, I am going to point out a few things to consider when trying out this type of shot. For example, when taking a silhouette portrait, if the subject is in front of trees, make sure there are no branches behind her.
A radio trigger can then be used to send the command to flash, creating a nice rim to the person.
One of the first steps in learning to do anything is to understand the language of the field, and then you must understand the equipment you will be using. There are photo opportunities out there that have yet to be taken, in some magical way the world is always different and if you look there is always something that you missed, and discovering what that might be, is the thing memoirs are made of. When shooting portrait, a profile shot is obviously more distinguishable than a frontal shot. Train yourself to know your equipment, and to be familiar with the terrain you will be working on, in other words; do your homework.



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