Photographer under coronavirus lockdown takes remote portraits via FaceTime

One business that has been hit hard by the coronavirus lockdown is photography – but a British photographer has come up with an innovative solution: taking remote portraits via FaceTime.

Tim Dunk’s main business is wedding photography, and that has completely dried up as all mass-gatherings are banned, forcing people to postpone their weddings.

The idea of taking portraits via FaceTime is not quite as crazy as it sounds …

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While you might think that you could take your own iPhone photos without the need to pay a professional photographer to do it for you, operating the camera is just part of a photographer’s skill – and not the most significant part.

Photography is about understanding light and framing. While Dunk admits that the quality isn’t going to compare with a shot from a pro camera, what he does is to work with clients to find good places in their home to take the shots, position them to take best advantage of the available light, and then to guide them in positioning the iPhone, and in posing.

Dunk explained his process in a piece on PetaPixel.

We start by finding the good light or by making good light with blinds or drapes. There’s lots of running around the house, which is really great for the energy of the shoot. Then we just try to be creative and have fun with it — it’s a welcome diversion for me and for them from the current situation!

Dunk says that he is embracing the lower quality of the camera sensor compared to his usual rangefinder cameras.

The image quality is not going to be great! Embrace it!

I add grain as it helps with the lo-fi aesthetic.

Dunk says he’s so far shot portraits via FaceTime for 50 clients.

The resulting images show people in their homes, as varied and interesting as any other portrait shoot, maybe more so given the strange times in which we find ourselves.

You can book one via his website. They cost £40 (approx $50) and the shoot takes around 30 minutes. 25% of the fee is donated to a foodbank organization.

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Avatar for Ben Lovejoy Ben Lovejoy

Ben Lovejoy is a British technology writer and EU Editor for 9to5Mac. He’s known for his op-eds and diary pieces, exploring his experience of Apple products over time, for a more rounded review. He also writes fiction, with two technothriller novels, a couple of SF shorts and a rom-com!

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