Step Back and Zoom
Here’s a quick tip for you…
Portraits look better if taken from a longer distance zoomed in than they do if taken from close up with a wide angle.
A wide angle will distort your subject’s features making them look puffy. Puffy is not an adjective people use when they describe their favorite portraits.
A few weeks ago I got my new long telephoto (Canon “L” 70-200mm f2.8 II for those who care). The main reason I wanted the lens was to improve my portraits by letting me shoot from farther away and zoomed in (again for those who care, my previous go-to portrait lens was my Canon “L” 24-100mm f4).
This is good for two reasons: first you get less distortion of your model’s features and, second, you get a better “bokeh” effect on the background. That is, the background gets blurred out more so there are fewer elements in the portrait that detract from the subject.
In any event, I used the new lens as an excuse to get back into the studio for some portraits of my kids. These photos were taken from twice as far away as I have normally shot in the past.