Behind The Scenes on A Photoshoot

Behind The Scenes with Thaiba Mahmood

There's a lot that goes into shooting the ideal photo, from the correct lighting to the appropriate props. If one takes a step back behind the scenes, what appears to be a magnificent photograph frequently has a quite different tale.

Sequencing plays a huge factor in my method of shooting, as I love to keep a consistent flow and dimension in my images, whiles creating difference and contrast. It is evident to me during the photography process through three crucial factors: light, subject, and composition. Keeping these three elements consistent during each session helps me to establish and create my own niche and style.

I enjoy travelling in general, so this comes hand in hand with me combining two things I love doing together. Travelling to set locations allows me to create a specific aesthetic and visual I aim to achieve in my photographs. This helps me emphasis the narrative and message I am trying to convey, specifically for portraiture.


Majority of my portrait shoots I take advantage of natural lighting; this is what I personally prefer and is my style of working. Natural lighting is extremely flattering for all skin tones, as well as the setup being quick and simple. I usually shoot on days the sun is at its peak and during the times of sunrise and sunset, because I love the warmth and glow it creates, also known as, ‘golden hour’. More colour and contrast are produced by brighter sunshine. The brighter the light, the more colourful the image will become, offering depth and allowing colours to stand out.

With the appropriate lighting and arrangement, time of day, and weather, each image can seem like it belongs in a haute couture ad and high end magazine.


I use the Canon 5D mark iiii with a 50mm lens, which is perfect for portraits and any close-up shots. The fast speed and wide aperture provide shallow depth of field. This allows you a lot of creative freedom in terms of blurring backgrounds and drawing attention to your main topic.