Friday, August 05, 2016

Catching the photographer's eye

As photographers we are always looking. Then something catches our eye. Our brain tells us that there's something interesting.

This is the moment the photographer needs to pause and figure out what exactly it is that caught their attention. Here it was obvious. The hair, the lipstick, the colours and their personalities.

So I asked these young ladies and they kindly agreed to pose for a portrait.

Often photographers will take a picture without thinking about what the exact element is that got their attention. The result is a photo that's not close enough. As Robert Capa said, “If your pictures aren't good enough, you're not close enough.” He meant that the reason for taking the picture has to fill the frame.

In this case it was colourful makeup, hair and style. I cropped in tight to emphasise these elements. Their expressions convey their different personalities. We have a moment here, in Jay Maisel's words, where "light, colour and gesture" come together in a single frame.

I think they really connect with the viewer and engage our attention. There's this odd asymmetrical balance between colourful hair on one lady and colourful lipstick on the other. It unifies two individuals and makes for a more powerful statement than a single portrait of either of them would have done.

Feedback welcome.

Thanks for reading.


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