Tuesday, 24 March 2009

People and Place: Exercise 1

So today I took my first steps into the People and Place course, and started with the first exercise, 'Portrait, scale and setting'. For this my brother was the (not so willing) model, and after a brief scout, I decided my garage would supply a nice location, with the brick wall adding a good textured interest to the photos, and a very complementary colour for the portraits as well.

My first image was of the face cropped in close, out of the number of images I took I settled on this one:
I felt this image was the best as it was quite engaging, the eyes get the viewers attention, the focus is good on the face, especially the eyes, the background is out of focus so not distracting, and the angles are quite dynamic. I got my brother to look up at the camera to help accentuate the eyes to help draw attention to them, and help with the framing of the image.

The second image, the one for the head and shoulders shot, I chose this image for:

I think this image is probably my favourite of the group. The eye is lead in to my brother, both by the bricks, and his body, and the angle again adds a bit of fun to the picture. The eyes are not so much the main object of attention anymore, more so just the face itself. The background also adds to the picture with leading the eye.

The next two images were more of a challenge, having to think about more things with positioning the body as well. The next image is the one I chose for my torso shot:

Now I tried two poses for this, the first was with his thumbs in his pockets, and his fingers pointing down, but it didn't quite look right, because the finger position was never quite right, so I tried this shot as well. Posing the hands wasn't too much of a challenge, the main issue was not to make them look unnatural, and to have the fingers visable, so it involved the less natural of folding the arms with both hands on top. This has worked well. The casual lean against the wall helps the look of the image, and the expression being a smile as we were having a bit of fun at the time. Again I've gone for diagonals in the image as it is more engaging, but this time with Rob entering from the other corner, as this angle just felt more natural for this image. Again the point of interest is the face, and the torso to some extent, but it is well balanced.

The fourth image was by far the toughest and I took the most photos for this one, finally settling on this image for the full body shot:

There were a lot of things to think about here, the feet, the hands, the arms, the expression, and I don't think this is perfect, but it is still a nice shot. The flaws are his hand nearest the camera, the fingers would look better outstretched, they look like they are cut off at the joint in this picture and it looks slightly unnatural. The feet were spread apart to look slightly better, and keep the body in a good pose. The expression is natural, and the environment doesn't have any distracting object, and again uses lines to lead into Rob. The body as a whole is more of the object of attention here, as it stands out from the environment. If I were to reshoot this image I would try a sitting pose, possibly with one foot fairly close to the camera with the leg outstretched, looking along the leg into the torso and up to the face, this would supply a more dynamic and engaging image in my opinion.

We also did a couple more shots for fun and I thought I would include this last shot as it is quite fun and different. The expression could be better, but it was good to capture a bit of action, and a very dynamic pose: