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Showing posts from March, 2008

Approach to taking a portrait

Portrait of Amitabh Bachchan. Click on the image to see larger version.

Every portrait is different but there are also elements which are the same, whether you’re shooting the famous or the locally famous.

Fame is of course all relative. It depends on profession, accomplishments or media celebrity status. Whoever the ‘famous’ individual is there are millions of people in the world who will never have heard them.

For example I photographed the legendary Indian Bollywood actor Amitabh Bachchan, who amongst his many accolades was awarded the Legion d'Honneur, the highest civilian award of France. But I’m positive that many people in North America will not have heard of him – although he has more fans than Tom Cruise, Jack Nicholson and Robert De Niro put together.

I find that however well known a person is cracking through egos and insecurities is really important when it comes to getting authentic strong portraits. However I hasten to add that when it came to photographing Amitabh the e…

Creative insights

For many years I have admired Victor Habbick's creative genius. He combines tremendous skill in photography, the digital darkroom and graphic design to come up with extraordinary images.

Victor has finally given in to the constant requests for information about how he achieves his images and decided to share his wisdom in a book, CD and as a download which you can buy here.

He describes his book on his website:

"The first collection of work by Artist and Photographer Victor Habbick, including chapters covering the first 10 years as a conceptual stock artist for The Science Photo Library. Candid biography of his early years and articles providing a fascinating and insightful look into the creative processes involved in the creation of his art and photography. Featuring a cornucopia of ideas and styles, science, technology, space, the human condition, fantasy, wildlife and so much more. Includes articles dealing with presentation and typography and a large selection of before and …

Where's the passion?

A couple doze peacefully on an English beach during a bank holiday weekend.

The title of the blog, where's the passion, has got nothing to do with the image, although I admit the juxtaposition amused me.

The question is really addressed to other photographers but I suppose it could apply to anyone in their career. Photography is one of those jobs that requires passion and care.

As the years go by I have encountered many professional photographers who sadly have lost their passion. It's usually replaced by a cynical attitude, cutting corners, going through the motions and often hidden behind a massive ego. These photographers use a tired formula that hasn't changed in years, get paid and move on to the next routine job. Even more sadly they frequently don't realise that they've lost that wide-eyed passion and enthusiasm they had when they first started. Yes, life can wear you down but when it does you've got to do something about it.

Fortunately some photographers r…

Life on the street

Leeds is a vibrant city for of life and diversity. I love it.

A big thank you to everyone for their emails and messages. I'll be back soon, April I hope. In the meantime I'll keep uploading the odd bit here and there.

Cheers,
Paul