People are always a great subject for photography. Whether it’s a formal portrait or a candid shot, if you take a good one, the result is an authentic peek into the human existence. But even for pros, this isn’t always a walk in the park.
One of the issues with photographing people is that they often appear small in the photos. That’s because the photographer either feels shy about approaching his or her subject, or didn’t know it was necessary. You want your subject to be big enough to have an impact. The exemption is when you intentionally want them to appear smaller because your focus is the surroundings.
Photographers shouldn’t be shy about dealing with people, especially as you’ll be making them your subjects for most of your projects. Learn how to break the ice. Smile and be friendly. Explain why you want the shot. You’ll be surprised how a lot of folks would love to get their picture taken.
In fact, many would simply shrug the idea off and continue what they were doing. This is a nice opportunity for you to get a candid shot. Check the angle that would look best, and then find a good spot for you to take refuge in for a while, until all the elements of the shot come together. When they do, snap the photo. Always be ready for the unexpected.
Another thing photographers need to remember is to take note of a person’s surroundings. This is what reveals a bit about them. For instance, when taking a photo of a market vendor, you can include her colorful stall in the shot. Perhaps even a customer or two. This will give your audience a glimpse about her everyday life. You want to convey emotion into your photographs.
Need inspiration for your next portrait shot? Browse through this collection of royalty-free pictures of people.
Royalty-Free Pictures of People
Nepali women fishing in a village river.
Small girl in a yellow shirt posing for a photograph.
Young man in a village in Nepal looking at the camera while sitting on his bicycle.
Woman sitting on the ground and cleaning black leather shoes.
Young Nepali kid in a white shirt smiling at the camera.
Young kids in a village in Nepal posing and smiling for a photo.
Nepali woman fishing with bare hands.
Young boy kicking a soccer ball at a field in Nepal.
Young boy in a black and white shirt looking at the camera in a country side in Nepal.
Old woman with a white shirt riding a bicycle through a country side.
Older man working on a field in Dzhankoy and smiling towards the camera.
Woman cooking a piece of pork for a customer at the night market in Koh Phangan.
Woman swinging on a beach at a tropical island with the amazing sea in the background.
Man holding a cigarette while standing at the pier in Koh Phangan.
Thai woman selling handmade jewelry at the beach in Koh Phangan.
People skating in Sevastopol with the beautiful Black Sea in the background.
Elderly lady working at the farmers market in Sevastopol.
Roller skating on a sunny day in Sevastopol.
Young boy in a gray shirt photographed with his hands crossed.
Farmers market full of fresh fruit and a young girl behind the stand.
A small kid and his granddad fishing by the sea in Sevastopol.
Family enjoying the nice weather while looking at the sea in Sevastopol.
A small girl in a floral dress photographed from above while feeding pigeons.
Small scooters for rent at the Sevastopol square and a young man sitting on one of them.
Shirtless friends enjoying the sunshine at the dock in Sevastopol.
Taking mobile pictures of cactuses in the Cactus Park in Barcelona.
Woman smiling at the camera while drinking matcha tea and working on her laptop.
Parked Tuk-Tuks and drivers waiting for customers in front of them.
Man working on his laptop at a local coffee shop in Thailand.
Man with a turban sitting at Gurudwara Bangla Sahib photographed through a stone fence.
Drinking holy water out of silver dishes at Gurudwara Bangla Sahib.
Man and woman lying on the ground in Lumphini Park and looking at a Bangkok tourist map.
Girls enjoying the weather while sitting on the grass in Bangkok.
Women dressed in traditional Japanese clothes strolling through Kyoto.
Japanese woman in a pink kimono photographed in a small alley.
Busy beach in Yalta photographed behind tree leaves.
Man standing on the stairs in front of his house and smoking a cigarette.
Two men talking to each other while a small kid ties up his roller skates.
Street painter in Yalta drawing a portrait of a red haired woman.
Old people dancing at a beautiful square in Yalta.
Older man without a shirt holding a young kid’s hand so pigeons can take food out of it.
Street food stand with a woman cooking behind it at the night market in Chiang Mai.
Beautiful girl enjoying the sun next to the sea with mountains in the background.
People walking on a mountain path surrounded by trees.
Busy streets in Chiang Mai during the Night Market.
Man using fire to make glass jewelry at the Chiang Mai Night Market.
Woman waiting to be served at a street food stand in Manali, India.
Woman cleaning the pathway to her house in Manali, India.
Two Indian women weaving while sitting on a bench outside.
Old Indian woman holding a cane while sitting and contemplating life on the streets of Manali.
Young Indian girls sitting on a concrete block and smiling towards the camera.
Black and white photography of a street music artist.
New York City streets full of people with tall buildings and billboards in the background.
Multiple snacks and candy displayed at a New York convenience store.
Kids from a Cambodian country side smiling and dancing at the camera.
Snack lady looking in her purse with the snacks right next to it and the crab statue in the background.
Happy Cambodian country side kids smiling towards the camera.
Hardworking men constructing a side walk with the sun reflecting off of a motorcycle’s mirror.