3 Tips for Shooting Portraits Through Windows

More of my couples are choosing to shoot their engagement photos at home and I absolutely love it! Not only does this give the couple a chance to share a look into their home life it gets my creative wheels turning! One of my favorite things to do is shoot portraits through a window. When a viewer sees the photos for the first time it really makes you feel like you’re an outsider looking in! Today I’m going to share 3 tips for shooting portraits through windows so you can try this on your next shoot!


When you’re shooting through glass, it’s creating a barrier for your lens to focus through. This is why it’s important to select what you want to be in focus. Sometimes that may mean you will need to manually focus if your autofocus wants to have a mind of its own! I also suggest using a prime lens that will allow you to have a shallow depth of field. This way the reflections on the glass and the background are thrown out of focus and are simply there for a design element.

Clean the Glass

Not only will your couple thank you for cleaning their window, you will thank yourself to save from hours of work in Photoshop! Taking a little Windex to the window will clean off the dirt and make it easier for your camera to focus. (The dirt will also create another barrier to shoot through!) Ya’ll, I promise taking this extra step will not be regretted!


If you want to cut down on the reflections in the glass but not totally loose them I suggest using a filter. I personally will use a polarizer because it will reduce the intensity of the reflection and also add a little saturation that is lost when shooting through a window.

I hope these 3 tips for shooting portraits through windows help spark that creative flare on your next shoot! They seem so simple, and that’s because they are, but they will take your image to the next step! Oh, one other tip! Shoot from an angle. This way your reflection doesn’t make it into the shot! Thanks for stopping by and if you haven’t had a chance yet, check out The Inspired Club for even more photo tips!

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Jana Williams

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