Silhouette Photography

Silhouette Photography
Silhouettes are some of the most beautifully gentle types of digital photography you can do. They can offer us a commanding presence combined with such gentleness. A digital photography silhouette can work so well to emphasise a certain subjects form very well. It can take your main focus from an uninteresting scene to one of pure interest and fascination. And this works extremely well in digital photography.

Digital photography silhouettes work best when there is one main subject (can comprise of a few subjects) that has the whole emphasis on it. What works best is the light coming from behind to block out the whole subject, not just dim the subject.

But, there is more to it than just blacking out the subject from the light behind. You will find that when you go to take your digital photo silhouette shape and form become features points of your picture. Your lines and form become paramount to a successful silhouette image. The background colour can really work well to enhance your silhouette, especially bold colour that stands out nicely to enhance the blackness of your subject. Your lines will help enhance the viewer’s perception of the more concentrated feeling you are creating.

Silhouette Photography

Bold background colour works well with a digital silhouette photo because it enhances the black and you’ll find it lifts your subject because of the stark contrast it creates. Black and bold, intense colour can enhance each other. A black figure against a hot pink background or bright blue can look powerful.

Your lines and shapes are enhanced because the detail of the frontal aspect of the main subject are gone. The eye is left with nothing but shapes and form to capture the essence of the image itself. We are unable to see frontal detail so naturally our eye looks at the composition and form of that subject to find information from it.

To create beautiful silhouette digital photography choose a simple theme. Silhouette is all about “simple” and there are many things that work well. Silhouetted subjects against a sunset sky are a traditional method of creating beautiful silhouettes.

Another thing you can do is black and white silhouette. Black and white silhouettes such as branches of a tree against a blue sky done in your black and white mode create a sense of drama and interest. The sprawled-out branches of the tree as a shape tend to capture our interest very quickly. Inanimate objects such as ladders, lamp posts, bridges and windmills can also make powerful silhouette digital photos.

Framing your silhouette is very important too. Framing creates an important aspect in the composition of your photo and helps to create the point of where the lines can begin and end.

Don’t forget about the weather. The weather changes your light instantly. Silhouettes rely on light and it’s important to make sure your weather isn’t changing too dramatically if you are taking outside silhouette digital photos. You can use good weather turned bad fairly well in silhouette digital photography. A mountain range with misty clouds can help increase the sense of the dramatic anyway, and when done in black and white, your silhouette becomes more powerful.

If you want to practice getting superb silhouette digital photos, just look at your shadows during the day. I urge you to really look at the lines, shapes and forms of the shadow because it’s very much like the kind of eye you would cast over a newly created silhouette photo. It’s a great way to practice your silhouette digital photography. See how the shadow creates the outside lines of your main subject. You can even take a photo of the shadow to get an idea of how silhouettes appear. So keep practising and improving your digital photography always!

About the Author

Amy is an multi-award winning photographer from Australia. She teaches enthusiast photographers how to take beautiful, professional photos in easy, plain English. She has a monthly photography emagazine and ebooks to help you create stunning images every time.

Comments (41)

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  1. Superb blog post, I have book marked this internet site so ideally I’ll see much more on this subject in the foreseeable future!

  2. Amy do you know how I can subscribe to the RSS feeder thing?

  3. Mary Collard says:

    As a Newbie, I am always searching online for articles that can help me. Thank you

  4. Jenny Gray says:

    I never realised silhouette photography could be so interesting. I just thought it was when something blocked the sun, I didn’t know you could get artistic with it.

  5. Sue Barker says:

    Great information Amy. I bougt your ebooks buy the way and absolutely love them! I have really improved in leaps and bounds with my digital photography. I can’t thank you enough for giving me the opportunity to be helped by someone so tolerant and understanding as yourself.

  6. Pam Pakes says:

    This was a really good bit of info. I love digital photography and can’t wait to apply the things you say on this blog.

  7. Can you do silhouette photography in black and white? Can you write an article about that?

  8. LG 32LD350 says:

    What is the best way to start shooting silhouette photography if you have never done it b4?

  9. Diana Cole says:

    How did you make this blog look this awesome. Email me if you want and share your wisdom. I’d appreciate it.

  10. Darryl Johns says:

    thank you for giving such great information and guidance. Your open approach to sharing the details and unraveling the mysteries of photography is been great.

  11. I am very grateful to you for the information. I have used it.

  12. car rental says:

    Brilliant, thanks, I will visit again soon.

  13. Ed Cohen says:

    Do you think that Silhouette Photography can be taken with any digital camera? Or do you need a dslr?

  14. Chrissie says:

    You made some very good points there. I researched this subject and found out that a good number of people will agree with your web site.

  15. Daniel says:

    Exceptional read, I just passed this onto a co-worker who was doing a little study on that. And he basically decided to buy me lunch because I found it for him .So let me rephrase that: Kudos for lunch!

  16. Emma Cockman says:

    Love your site Amy, helps me improve my photography.

  17. Tami says:

    Super informative article, thanks a million.

  18. Larry says:

    I wanted to photography myself as a silhouette, how can I do that?

  19. Lizzie says:

    Takings silhouettes is really interstng.

  20. Penny says:

    Awesome blog – I agree with what you’re saying. Photography is such a gentle hobby, but can be very hard to master sometimes!

  21. Thank you very much for posting this awesome info! Looking forward to reading more posts.

  22. mutuelle says:

    This is really a extremely beneficial read for me, Have to admit you might be 1 in the most effective bloggers I ever saw.Thanks for posting this informative article.

  23. Fabian says:

    I just wanted to throw you a big thanks – you cleared up some things for me!

  24. Luci says:

    Amy can you get a better effect with film?

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  26. Caroline says:

    Many thanks for an amazing publication of Focus Ezine. You do such great photography and I have learnt a lot from it.

  27. Cassie says:

    I love silhouettes, thanks for the article and info.

  28. Fran says:

    This website is excellent. I have mastered a great deal of things from here. Thanks.

  29. Georgina says:

    Thanks for this infor!

  30. Penni says:

    I’ve just got my new camera and don’t know how to use it.

  31. Vic says:

    Thanks for the info.

  32. Billy says:

    Great website Amy. Thanks for sharing.


  33. jim says:

    Thanks for your article Amy, it’s helped me a lot.

  34. Barbara says:

    Thanks for some excllent tips, I bought your ezine today and it is exactly what I have bene looking for.

  35. Carole says:

    Cool stuff, thanks.

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