Huawei GR5 2017: Dual Cam Pro for Portrait Photography

Last Saturday, April 8, 2017, I attended the #GoDualCamNow Portrait and Food Photography Summer Workshop held at Circa 1900. The event was organized by a renowned travel and photography blogger, Aris Mape of D’yan Lang, in collaboration with Huawei Mobile Philippines.

The main speaker of the phoneography (mobile phone photography) session was Ritchie Linao of Dodzki Photography, a professional fine arts & wedding photographer. Lots of aspiring phoneographers also joined the event, most of which I’ve known in social media and in the blogosphere. But I was more thrilled with the models, two of which are my friends and I have yet to collaborate with them in a photoshoot – this time, as a phoneographer. Aside from supporting them, I took part in said event as one of the Huawei Ambassadors, being the only representative of Huawei’s solid Dual Cam mid-ranger, GR5 2017.

Not all photography is the same. As an outdoorsy person, I love to snap photos of nature in landscape mode using DSLR camera or adventure shots using action camera. But when it comes to shooting everyday encounters like the meal or snack you eat during break or the people around you may it be portrait or even a selfie, the type of camera you could easily bring with you is your mobile phone. I must admit that I’m not really into Portrait and Food Photography, until I graced this photography workshop armed only with my Huawei GR5 2017. At first I wasn’t sure what my output would be until I got to see the performance of Huawei GR5 2017. And it didn’t disappoint.

I. Portrait Photography

This blog post highlights Portrait Photography. If you’re interested to learn about Food Photography, see Part II for the tips.

Applying what I’ve learned during the workshop, here are the Portrait shoot results utilizing Huawei GR5 2017 Dual Camera.

1.  Light Source

The origin of light is of critical importance to all photographers. Without light, controlling the image is difficult and desired illumination will not produce accurate rendition of the scene. You could also utilize reflector effectively to enhance your photographs by simply bouncing natural light.

During the photoshoot, the light is your best friend. Make use of the light source, natural or artificial, to create awesome snapshot of the light, the dark and the shadow.

The king of light source is no other than the sunlight, but not all the time the sun is out to provide light. When in a low-light condition, the performance of GR5 2017 is quite pro as well, as the result retains important details and unnoticeable grains.

2. The Rule of Thirds

The Rule of Thirds is a powerful compositional technique for making photos more interesting and dynamic. Apply the Rule of Thirds by creating imaginary three columns, three rows, or nine equal sections in the image. Align your subject with the guide lines and their intersection points to create an aesthetically pleasing result.

Compose your photo by purposely placing your subject on one of the section or intersecting points (region divided into thirds with two imaginary lines vertically and two lines horizontally). If you didn’t perfect it the first time, just crop and reframe the image during post-processing so that they fit within the rules.

3. Bokeh

Bokeh is the pleasing or aesthetic quality of out-of-focus blur in a photograph. The background of your subject is blurred to produce DSLR-like “bokeh” effect. In this shot, the model, Ukay Ukay Diva is highlighted while the orchids are blurred out. The first photo in #2 Rule of Thirds also utilizes the Bokeh effect to the foreground, emphasizing the focus to the model being photographed.

Taking wide aperture photos can produce images with a shallow depth of field. Aperture opening can be adjusted from f/0.95 to f/16. Then after taking the photo, you can refocus your subject and even adjust how blur you want your background to be. See Part II for bokeh application and comparison to food photography.

4. Attention to detail

One of the most important things about product photography is paying attention to the small things. If you place your subject in the middle, see to it that the lines found in the left side are in harmony with the lines in the right.

Pro pre-nup shots are also possible with Huawei GR5 2017. Let’s take a cue from the models Chesterscott and Cheska as they embody happy couple, without sacrificing the details in the background.

Photography is an art, so be creative in showing things to viewers  in a different way. And this one is entitled “Diva in the Mirror”.

Get up close and personal with your subject. Pay close attention to lines, curves and shapes.

5. Break the rules

Don’t be afraid to break the rules. Take a risk by putting your subject in the middle, despite the messy background and let the leading lines draw your attention to the model.

Capture “behind the scenes” shot in a creative way. And some photographers would really go extra mile to capture that desired shot. Go Gly!

Interchange the roles of the subject and the background. The model becomes the background as the subject is now the phone capturing the supposed subject, the model.

You may also want to try different composition by excluding the whole face and highlight only the element that you’d like to create drama with ~ the lips. It shows a mysterious effect to the photo.


There you go phoneographers!

Hope you also learn the basics of portrait photography from this article. Grab your dual camera mobile phones now and click that shutter! Like what most  pro photographers say, “just keep on experimenting!”. Add randomness and creativity to your shots, and have fun with it ~ that’s the perfect way to develop your craft.

I’m proud to share this photo with the one and only Ritchie Linao of Dodzki Photography. I’ve learned a lot from this awesome and humble guy. Even when the session was over, I can still ask tips and advice from him to further enhance my portrait and food photography skills. With the solid results above, it got me into thinking to engage into wedding photography (using mobile phone) soon. Would I stand a chance? Would you support me? LOL

And before I end this post, allow me to credit Circa 1900 for a very productive photoshoot experience. It is a great place to shoot, fine dine and unwind ‘coz everything ~ from the place, staff, food ~ are superb. Every corner of the venue is snap-worthy. The staff are very accommodating. And the food? World-class! Experience it for yourself by visiting Circa 1900 at Sanjercas Ville Extension Road, Cebu City.

Should you want to know how to photograph indulgent and mouthwatering food, read Part II here.

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