Make Images That Speak for Themselves

Beach_27JUN10-86

There is a lot that goes into a photograph.  Vision, creativity, originality, emotion, heart, soul, and expression – to name a few.  Technical aspects like exposure, light, and composition come into play as well – but they are fairly minor when you take a step back and look at the big picture.

There are tons of folks out there who can take a technically good photograph.  Once you’ve learned how to operate your camera, you’re well on your way to taking technically great pictures.  And there is nothing wrong with a technically great picture – but in order to stand out from everyone else your image must be different.  It must ‘speak’ to the viewer.

The seven things I mentioned above that go into photographs aren’t something that you can be taught.  You won’t learn them at a workshop or in a book.  Those things come from within each and every one of us and at no point will they be the same for any of us.

In the photo above, I wanted to bring out emotion and animation in my subject – which happened to by my youngest son Daniel.  I wanted him to display something that only my wife and I get to see on a daily basis.  Something more than just the ‘smiling kid’ photo.

I’m a people photographer, so interacting with my subjects to invoke the emotions I’m seeking is how I get the job done.  I like photos that feel and look natural.  You can even achieve that from a more posed photo as well – and it takes nothing more than interaction.

If you’re not doing this already, the next time you’re shooting, talk with your subjects.  Talk about things that they enjoy or like – or even don’t like.  You’ll be amazed at the images you can capture when people are being themselves.

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