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The Portrait Photographer’s Guide:

Pro Tips and Insights

Crafting Your Vision: How I Recreated a Blockbuster Style for Pamela’s Family Photos

by | Behind the Scenes, Client Stories, Techniques & Tutorials

Ever gazed upon a stunning photograph from a Hollywood blockbuster and thought, “I wish I could capture a moment just like that?” Well, Pamela did. And together, we embarked on a thrilling adventure to bring that vision to life!

It was an ordinary Tuesday when Pamela reached out to me, her excitement palpable even over the phone. She had seen a photograph that stole her heart—a memorable pose of the cast from Guardians of the Galaxy. She didn’t just want to appreciate it; she wanted her family to embody it. The kicker? She wanted this cinematic magic to grace her Christmas cards. Now, there’s a festive challenge I couldn’t resist!

At first glance, many would see an ensemble of intergalactic heroes striking dynamic poses. But beneath the surface lay layers of emotion and artistry that Pamela had keenly observed:

Cast of Guardians of the Galaxy in relaxed poses, featuring characters like Groot, Rocket, Gamora, Star-Lord, and Drax against a white background

1. Endearing Poses: The cast wasn’t just sitting; they were *interacting*. Leaning on each other, resting heads on shoulders, legs crossed over. Each pose was a silent testament to camaraderie, trust, and mutual affection. Pamela wanted this essence for her family—a portrayal of their tight-knit bond.

2. Soft White Background: A seamless white background set the stage. Simplistic yet striking. My studio is well-equipped with white seamless paper to recreate such a backdrop. Check one off the list!

3. Prominent Shadows: Those defined shadows were hard to miss. They spoke of hard light, a challenge I eagerly accepted with my trusty Broncolor strobes. The dramatic play of light and shadow was within reach!

4-Deep Depth of Field: Everything from their shoe soles to the tiniest hair strand was in focus. That’s a deliberate camera choice. I decided on an aperture of f13, giving me that expansive focus range without compromising on the image’s quality.

5-Comic Drawing Feel: This was perhaps the most exciting part. The image had high contrast, particularly in medium grey shades, with minimal blacks. Achieving this was a post-production challenge. But with Photoshop at my disposal, I was pretty confident.

Confidence brimming, I accepted Pamela’s project, but with a small caveat: while we could mirror the style, we couldn’t replicate it pixel by pixel. We’re humans, not printers! Our endeavor was to capture the *essence*, not clone an existing masterpiece. Pamela, being the gem she is, understood this straight away.

On the day of the shoot, she walked in, her family in tow oh boy, those kids were naturals! Pose after pose, we mirrored the dynamics from the inspirational photo. Yet, amidst the fun and laughter, we crafted a portrait that was inherently *theirs*.

The final result? A photograph that echoed the essence of Guardians of the Galaxy but told a unique story—Pamela’s family’s story. And as they departed my studio, faces alight with joy, I was reminded of why I do what I do.

Photographed in our Gilbert Studio, a young man in a black polo with tattoos and woman in a vibrant red blouse sitting casually against a white background, displaying a close sibling bond.

So, to you, dear reader: Have a vision? A style you’re yearning for, even if it’s not in my typical portfolio? Let’s chat! I’m always up for a challenge. Your dream snapshot might just be a studio session away. After all, in the world of photography, the galaxy (or rather, the *studio*) is the limit!

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Meet The Author

High school senior girl with a bob haircut, wearing a light purple and gold dress, posing with her hand on her chest at Marie Feutrier's professional portrait studio in Gilbert, AZ, for her glamor senior photo.
 Marie Feutrier, a French transplant in Gilbert, AZ, masterfully captures personalities through her lens. With an accent as charming as her photos, she doesn’t just take your picture, she tells your story, one click at a time.

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