Silhouette photography is a wonderful way to convey drama, mystery, emotion and mood in a picture. A silhouette is defined as a view of an object or a scene consisting of the outline and a featureless interior, with the silhouetted object usually being black.

Silhouette photography needs three things: you, a subject with strong form, and a strong light source.

Look for an uncluttered background. It’s all about the shape of the silhouette. Keep everything else simple.

The sun is a good light source. The best time for silhouette photography is when the sun is low in the sky. It’s easier to place the subject between you and the sun.

Use Spot metering mode and a small aperture if you are using an SLR camera. Focus on the bright background. You can often pop the camera in P setting for a good silhouette shot too. 

Creating stunning silhouettes is all about where you stand in relationship to your subject and the light. Place your subject between you and the light source. If you’d like to be in the shot using your timer. 

If using an I-phone:

Frame your shot and tap the lightest part of the photo, e.g. the bright sky, to set exposure for the brightest part of the scene. By exposing for the brightest part of the scene, the areas that are not so bright, such as the foreground and your subject, will appear under-exposed (darker than normal). If you need to make the subject even darker to turn them into a silhouette, simply reduce the exposure of the image by swiping your finger down on the screen.

Tips –

1 Strong Light behind the subject
2 Use simple backgrounds
3 Position your subject correctly eg create some separation or movement
4 Props are a great addition to the shot
5 Simple post production can enhance your images

Some useful links below but it really isn’t tricky at all. I promise!

I will add to this post and include some information about taking silhouettes indoors using window light.

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