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  • Sexual Violence Centre

shadow photography tips

This International Women's Day, we want to highlight the shadow pandemic of sexual and domestic violence and we need your help. We want you to photograph or create imagery using the theme of shadows - it could be yourself, or an object, or even something in nature. We will be showcasing your work on social media and in an online gallery from the 8th of March and accepting pieces until the end of the month.

You don't need a camera or any experience in photography to get involved - you have everything you need on your smartphone! Here are some tips to get you started:


Adjusting exposure - on an iPhone, press the screen and a yellow box with a sun will pop up. Move this up and down to play with the exposure.

On an Android Phone, tap the camera when taking your photo - a slider to play with the exposure will appear on the side.

Light source

To create a silhouette affect, put the light behind your subject and play with the exposure settings.

Try picking a single light source - this could be the sun or a torch/lamp.

If using natural light, shoot during golden hour - this is an hour after sunrise and an hour before sunset, when the sun is low in the sky. During this time, you’ll notice very long shadows.

Take advantage of window light if shooting during the day.

Play around with the object/person and move around the light.

Shapes and textures

Look for interesting shapes created by shadows, or use what you have around you to create these shapes!

Try out different backgrounds to create shadows - smooth walls will give a different effect to textured concrete.


Think about composition - you can set a grid on your phone by going to camera settings. Trust your gut about what looks good!

For more advice on composition, we recommend this blog post:

Optional: if you really want to emphasise the light and dark you could edit your photo so that it is black and white.

Most importantly - be creative! We are also accepting artwork and poetry, but we are open to any kind of art that can be showcased online.

If you have any questions, get in touch with us here or via social media. You can send your submissions to and include Submission in the subject line.

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