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Best Californian yoga photographer

Great photo tips from your best Californian yoga photographer

Most of the great photo tips from your best Californian yoga photographer can be applied to portrait photography in general. Some of the great photo tips are specific to photographing yoga.

Choosing the right angle for your photograph is crucial for capturing an asana (yoga pose). Different angles can highlight different aspects of the pose, such as the lines of the body, the symmetry, or the flow of movement. Try experimenting with different angles, such as shooting from above, below, or from the side, to see what works best for the pose you’re photographing. Some poses require shooting them well, or their alignment may look incorrect.

I recommend using natural light. Natural light can be one of the most beautiful and flattering sources for photographing asanas. It can highlight the curves and lines of the body and create a soft, natural look. Try shooting early or late afternoon when the light is soft and warm, and avoid harsh, direct sunlight. If you’re shooting indoors, try to position yourself near a window or natural light source. Midday light often works well for indoor shoots or when you’re deep in the forest.

best Californian yoga photographer

Depth of field

Depth of field refers to the range of focus in a photograph, from the foreground to the background. Experimenting with the depth of field can help create more dynamic and exciting images. For example, you could use a shallow depth of field to blur the background and focus on the details of the pose and your model. Or you could use a deeper depth of field to capture the entire scene in sharp focus. Most of the time, I prefer a shallow depth of field to help make the model stand out in the photo. 

I shot the photo above of Lindsay practicing yoga in Ubud, Bali, and the two kids in this post with a shallow depth of field. I took the image of Brian with Mt. Rainier in the background with a bigger depth of field so that you can see the magnificent mountain in the background more clearly. 

Yoga poses can be emotional and expressive. Capturing that emotion can make for a powerful and memorable photograph. Whether it’s the serenity of a meditative pose or the power and strength of an advanced asana, try to capture the feeling and energy of the pose in your photographs.

The lens you choose will also significantly impact the final image. A wide-angle lens is great for capturing the overall shape and form of the pose. A telephoto lens is ideal for capturing details and expressions. It also makes the background look closer to your model.

Yoga photographer Santa Cruz

The best lens and great photo tips from your best Californian yoga photographer

You can choose the lens that best fits the asana you want to photograph. I prefer a prime lens for portraiture because it allows for a shallow depth of field. Even the background of a beautiful forest can be overwhelming. I like to focus on the yogi with a simple blurred background.

Good communication is essential when photographing an asana. Please work with the yogi to understand their intentions and goals for the pose and their abilities and limitations. This will help you create images that capture the essence of their practice and showcase the yogi’s strengths.

Only a few yogis and yoginis are solid in their yoga alignment, especially for more advanced poses. To direct or adjust them, you must know what a well-aligned asana looks like. If you are familiar with most of the well-known poses and understand the intention of yoga, you will be more successful in capturing the beauty of yoga.

Photo tips

Why I love Photographing Yoga

I love being in nature, and I love photographing yoga. I have been a professional yoga photographer for twenty years.

In 2003, as your best Californian yoga photographer, I started photographing for a yoga calendar called Sacred Form. Half of my models were women, and half of them were men. All of them were doing yoga in nature, and all were naked. Can you get any more hippie than naked yoga?

The physical practice of yoga involves a wide range of movements and postures that are visually captivating. From the graceful flow of a sun salutation to the strength and balance of a warrior pose, there is no shortage of beautiful shapes and lines to capture on camera. The human body is a work of art, and yoga offers an opportunity to showcase its strength and flexibility.

Yoga’s spiritual component can be expressed through photography. Many yoga practitioners seek to connect with their inner selves and the world through mindfulness and meditation. This can be visually represented through images that capture the peacefulness and serenity that yoga can bring.

best Californian yoga photographer

Nature and Human Form

Yoga also offers an opportunity to explore the beauty of nature through photography, and many yogis practice in Santa Cruz’s natural settings. These natural environments provide a stunning backdrop for yoga poses and movements. This contrast between the human body and the natural world can create breathtaking images that capture the harmony between the two. This relationship between nature and our bodies inspired me to make my Sacred From yoga calendar. It was also the main inspiration for my newest book, Natural Beauty.

Another reason why yoga is so beautiful to photograph is the creative freedom that it allows. Yoga poses can be adapted and modified in countless ways. This allows for endless possibilities when it comes to capturing them on camera. We can experiment with angles, lighting, and composition to create unique and striking images that showcase the beauty and creativity of yoga.

Yoga is also a practice that involves fluid, graceful movements that are both calming and energizing. Whether it’s the slow, deliberate poses of Hatha yoga or the more dynamic movements of Vinyasa flow, the movements of yoga are captivating to watch and photograph. Through our lens, we can capture the beauty of the human body in motion, frozen in time.

Finally, yoga is a form of art. Like other art forms, it requires dedication, skill, and creativity to master. Yogis spend years honing their practice and developing their unique style and expression. Photographers can capture this artistry by showcasing the subtle nuances and details of each pose and movement, highlighting the individuality and creativity of the yogi.