Shooting Glamour Outdoors

“Simplicity is another thread that runs through Peter’s photographic technique. Often we carry out complex assignments with a cree of two—Peter and I.”—Alice Gowland

I was lucky enough to get to know Peter Gowland any my book Joe Farace’s Glamour Photography (see below) is dedicated to Alice and Peter Gowland. Simplicity has also been my philosophy about glamour and boudoir photography and the featured photograph  exemplifies what I call my No-Frills system. (I call the image “The Face that Launched a Thousand Ships” and the lighting is simple: It’s just daylight with maybe some gill from a Canon speedlite. All of the camera gear used to make this image fit into a single (now discontinued) Joe Farace Reporter backpack, which easily fits into the back of my car, even when my car was a Mini Cooper.

faces.sheaWhen shooting with daylight, here’s no math required and I don’t worry about lighting ratios; Whatever looks good to the model and me is good enough. As far as posing is concerned, I seldom ask the model to move, preferring to let her be herself and don’t employ poses the model herself would not normally find comfortable. That why also why I almost never use a tripod because a handheld camera provides the freedom to move around and lets me put myself into whatever position that’s necessary to get the picture.

Camera was a Canon EOD 50D with EF 28-135mm lens that has  a useful range of focal lengths for glamour photography. It was set at 105mm. Exposure was 1/100 sec at f/6.3 and ISO 200. A Canon EX 580 speedlite was used as fill.

I converted the photograph into black and white using the free Silver Efex Pro, which created the first layer (working from bottom to top.) Then I used the Color Stylizer filter that’s part of the also free Color Efex Pro.

Coming Tomorrow: Three Reasons to Shoot Glamour Photography Using Available Light.

Joe is author of Joe Farace’s Glamour Photography that features information about using minimal equipment demonstrating how to shoot glamour portraits in available light situations or using minimal lighting like speedlights. Affordable new and used copies are available from

Author: Joe Farace

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