Senior Portraits With An Edge

High school seniors no longer want to graduate with only a cookie-cutter yearbook picture as their legacy.

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At a popular location for seniors called “The Legal Wall” in Rochester, New York, Swales positioned her subject to capture backlight flare then lit her from the front with a remotely triggered Canon 580EX Speedlite to highlight Jill’s bright green boots.Tammy Swales Photography
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With pro-athlete attitude, Alex here holds his wakeboarding equipment. The Billeys lit this with two reflectors and shot low to bring in the blue sky and create sun flare across Alex’s shoulders, giving it a “California” feel.Largo Photography
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Scott Hayne turned a windy day into an opportunity rather than an obstacle, allowing Chelsea’s hair to partially obscure her face. He chose a location just outside his studio to make use of the golden sunlight and dune grass. An overlaid texture adds to the warm tones and lends a vintage look. Says Hayne, “A combination of light, lens and editing gave me the emotion and depth I desire in all my shots.”Scott Hayne
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A fan of America's Next Top Model, Brianna wanted a "modeling session." Chris and Tammie Billey of Largo Photography chose to juxtapose her against an old, gnarled mesquite tree in the desert. The shot was lit with two Canon 580EX Speedlites, umbrellas and a reflector.Scott Hayne
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Hayne captured this sweet candid shot as his subject was walking down the beach. A “cross-processing” effect applied in postproduction gives the image a pop-art feel.Largo Photography
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Connor’s hair is a huge part of his personality, so Mike and Heather Krakora lit the background with a flash narrowed by a 30-degree grid spot and aimed to create a glowing effect. They applied a Photoshop action to simulate a “tilt-shift” effect when they converted the image to black-and-white.Michael Krakora
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Tammy Swales found the perfect grungy setting to create this intense, edgy portrait; a 24mm wide-angle added to the effect.Tammy Swales Photography
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Huy Nguyen of f8studio shot this image in a parking garage using mostly natural light, then used a custom Photoshop action to convert it to black-and-white. Says Nguyen: “If I had included all of her face, the viewer’s eyes would stray too far to the right and the photo would just be another common headshot.”Huy Nguyen
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At a popular location for seniors called “The Legal Wall” in Rochester, New York, Swales positioned her subject to capture backlight flare then lit her from the front with a remotely triggered Canon 580EX Speedlite to highlight Jill’s bright green boots.Tammy Swales Photography
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This montage was shot in natural light by the Billeys: “Yuya is a phenomenal person full of personality and comic relief. Our poser gave him time to share the many facets of his character.”Largo Photography