These hints are a good place to start
Photo by Murray November
ANGLES: Don’t stand up for every photo you take. Get down at least once in a while. Move in close.
BRIGHT SUN: Stop trying to make holes in the head of your subject by shooting outside in bright sun. Direct sunlight makes subject squint and produces awful shadows. Shoot subjects in open shade (shaded but open to light). If you must shoot in bright sun, put the sun behind and a little to the left or right of the subject and USE YOUR FLASH to fill shadows! Beware of lens flare.
.SHAKING: DO NOT hold your camera out in front of you and use the LCD when taking your shot. It is almost impossible to stay still when pressing the release button. You may have a camera that has image stabilization, but don’t use the LCD anyway. After LCD use, if you blow up a photo in order to crop it, you might wonder why it is not as sharp as you would like. To be sure, use a tripod.
OFF -CENTER:Generally do not place your subject in the dead center of the shot, but to the left or right. We’ll get into composition in the future.
PORTRAITS: Place camera about eye height. This is not an absolute. Everyone’s face is not the same. You might have to move up or down slightly to compensate for long or short noses, etc.
BACKGROUNDS: Plain backgrounds are usually best for shots of people. In future articles we will get into the how and why of out-of-focus (very fuzzy) backgrounds and how to achieve them.
Don’t shoot at high noon; mid-morning or midway between noon and sunset is better.
IF YOUR SUBJECT IS HUMAN,
GIVE THE SUBJECT SOMETHING TO DO
DON’T SHOOT THEM AS IF YOU WERE EXECUTING THEM