How to Achieve Variety in your Photographs at One Location


Achieving variety in your photography is pivotal to capturing your audience’s attention and impressing the clients you shoot for. When a client hires you to do a lifestyle photoshoot, most likely they are expecting a wide variety of images to select from. However, sometimes you only have the time or budget to go to a single location. At Shutterstock Custom, a lot of our photographers choose to photograph at one location for our assignments depending on the ask, so it’s important to know how to capture variety in other ways. We’re sharing our tips on how you can start thinking outside the box and achieve variety in your photographs at one location. 

Survey your surroundings before you shoot

Take a walk around and make note of interesting things in the location. There may be small details that pop out that you might miss when you get behind a lens, so start by really understanding your surroundings. If you’re shooting outdoors at a park, take a walk and look at different types of trees, potential backgrounds in playgrounds, or sporting fields that might add variety. If you’re shooting inside a home, take note of interesting textures such as artwork or blankets that you can shoot in front of, different wall colors, and areas that light enters. Knowing your location through and through is the first step to creating a diverse set of images.

Look for different perspectives

When you’re shooting a model, change the perspective and angle where you are shooting often to provide variety in poses. You don’t want the images to all look the same, therefore you should encourage movement with your models and a lot of changes. Get low, shoot from eye level, and have your model move with you. For example, let’s say you are shooting a model at a tennis court. Take some wide shots of the model at the court, then move closer. We suggest doing a 365 around any subject you are shooting to capture a variety of angles when you start your shoot. Once you’re done the standing shots, move to the ground or leaning against a wall. You’d be surprised by how much your photographs can change when you change the perspective from where you are shooting at.


Be surprised by micro backgrounds

Backgrounds for your photographs can be made out of virtually anything found in an environment, so you’d be surprised at what you can turn into a backdrop. For example, if you’re shooting in a city. You might see a part of a sign that’s bright yellow in the middle of nowhere. To the naked eye, it might just look like a yellow sign. However, if you use it as a backdrop and place your subject in front of it, you might be surprised at how unrecognizable the location becomes. The same goes for any plants you might find, surfaces such as concrete, or textures in water or land.

When you are trying to achieve variety in your photographs, the most important thing is to open your eyes and really take in your surroundings. Allow color, textures, and details to jump out at you. Your job as a photographer is to think outside the box and find areas in your environment that might be missed by those not looking. For more tips on keeping it simple on location, check out this blog post. We can’t wait to see what you create on your next shoot. 

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