Studio Portrait 101

Extraordinary Portraits of Ordinary People

Studio Portrait 101

Photo: © Dail Deri

The good news for commercial photographers is that everybody needs a portrait at one time or another. The bad news is…everybody needs a portrait at one time or another.

It's great news if you measure the potential size of the market. Bad news if you're not trained to handle the ordinary-looking, the subject who has four left feet when posing, the unphotogenic, the overweight and underweight, the eyebags and big short, the average Joe. These are the regular clients of a commercial portrait studio in a mall or busy downtown area. Not professional models who still look perfect upside-down. Dail Deri photographs these types every day, and in this workshop she shares professional techniques for photographing students, office workers, housewives, businessmen, babies, and entire families.

What will be covered

  • What's in a portrait studio - minimum size requirement of a studio and the essential equipment and accessories
  • Basic light set ups for portraits
  • Taking indoor portraits with studio lights or compact flash
  • Correcting subject's imperfections through lighting and posing
  • Posing your subject
  • Individual, couple, and group portraits
  • Investment for commercial studio or on-location portrait photography services

Who should attend

  • Studio Portrait 101 is perfect for those who wish to:
  • Learn the basic principles of photographing people - from babies to adults, for personal or commercial purposes
  • Gain knowledge in taking indoor portraits with the use of studio lights or even compact flash
  • Put up a portrait studio, whether for commercial or personal use
  • Make portrait photography their business or supplementary source of income


  • Digital SLR with lens in the wide to tele range, with a PC socket for studio flash
  • Completion of the PCCI basic photography workshop or equivalent experience in basic photography and lighting principles


A photographer, instructor, and writer, Dail combines her father's technics with her own. With experience in running a portrait studio and home-service portraits, and photographing celebrities and "ordinary" people, she has shared her knowledge in photography in various seminars and workshops in the country. Dail took up communications arts major in photography at De La Salle University.

Comments from participants

Very comprehensive course content, effective teaching methods, competent instructor. The activities promote good interaction with other photographers. This course bridges knowledge and skills leading to my great photos. Thank you.

– Maria Janice Lecias

The course covered all areas needed to jump start a photography business. All techniques taught were very vital to the subject matter and hands-on exercises were all very helpful.

– Ikie P. Binoya

… Money and time well spent.

– Ikie P. Binoya

It was very engaging. Lots of interaction with the instructor and my classmates. The instructor was very patient and accommodating.

– Cathy Santamaria (KUDOS)

I liked the hands-on application immediately from theory to actual.

– Charlton Seechung

Able to practice, complete equipment, good instructor.

– Erwin Jalao

We learned so much in this workshop. It was very fruitful and inspired us so much to become a professional photographer someday. Thanks so much, Teacher Dail. This is one of the best courses.

– Gay Lee (BestMed Healthcare)

I liked the sharing of personal/business experiences by the instructor.

– Alvin Hawak

Fantastic. Good for studio business.

– Nonoy Ubal (Photostyle Studio)

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