Many clients come to The Headshot Works for outdoor or “environmental” portraits. There are advantages to both studio and outdoor shooting locations.


Shooting portraits out in the environment can offer tons of options for settings and you can pick the time of day to do the shoot which affects the color and nature of light. But, Mother Nature can be fickle. The photographer does not have control of inclement weather or dense overcast. In bad conditions the experienced photographer can usually make wonderful photographs by shooting in the shade of a building when the sun is too strong or finding an overhang to escape rain.

The Studio

Making your portrait in the studio gives the photographer maximum control. Studio lights can be positioned exactly so that shadows and highlights give the exact look desired. The softness or harshness of the lighting can be controlled with umbrellas, soft boxes, scrims and more. A limiting factor in the studio can be a small choice of backgrounds. Often we use a plain background so that textures can be dropped into the finished photo providing additional options.


These to images of young model K demonstrate the advantages of the studio and the the outdoors. In the studio shot on the right we used soft light to the left and a gentle fill light to the right to match her young vibe. In the outdoor image we used the local beach pier as a shade against the harsh sun and to provide some geometric interest with the pier’s pilings. Both images were shot within an hour of each other!