On shooting people
in Blog EN August 05, 2022, 0:36
It is to me odd that we can drift from one kind of photography to another. Sometimes, vastly different.
I used to shoot mostly ambient and landscape photography - things that exist as they are, things that do not ask me questions, things that I could not pose, nor style. A reality.
Now over last year I have been shooting, almost exclusively, people.
Is it not strange? How does one become a fashion and beauty photographer after years and years of shooting reality?
Shooting people, or more correctly - making images of people - is not about reality. It is all about having a vision, making someone look their best, or worst. And you get asked questions, and you get to become a dictateur, if only for a time. Someone must decide - how, where, when to make the image. And this someone is almost always the photographer.
From a humble admirer of sunsets to a mean dictateur making people look their best. Or worst.
Let it be.
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in Blog EN September 10, 2021, 18:49
It amazes me how with each photography mode we try we find there is always more of it to learn.
Now preparing for our first big fashion shoot I am suddenly a project manager much more than I am a photographer. I need to understand something about styling, makeup, modeling and budgeting and weather forecasting too ...
I am scared. But I want to be scared too.
Let it be.
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First 10 thousand images.
in Blog EN December 26, 2019, 21:59
Someone said my first 10 thousand images would be the worst.
And so I started wondering how many images I had shot this far.
My wildest guess is there were between 10 and 25 thousand images shot on B&W and then also color celluloid. Then maybe about 10 thousand early digital images during our world tour 2004-2008. Followed by about 25 thousand digital images taken over last year.
This means I have made over 50 thousand images of all kinds, over some 45 years, but most over last year.
Remembering the early ones, and looking at the ones made yesterday, I can't see how the new ones are any better than the old ones. They clearly are not.
Maybe I need I a longer runway. Maybe I am a visual idiot.
Anyways, have cut down my portfolio here to just 10 images. It hurt like cutting one's own flesh.
Stay calm and reset your counters. Think twice, shoot less.
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Reduce, deduce, seduce ...
in Blog EN December 12, 2019, 23:03
Done reducing my images from 90 to fewer than 20. Meant to be down to 10 images for my first year here. But this proves so hard. What to drop, what to keep.
What to drop what to keep.
Travel light. One body, one soul.
Step back, look again. Then keep on cutting.
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in Blog EN August 02, 2019, 18:49
If it is not it, then it is not worth it.
Like any fat question, you can rely on pre-pack answers. You can listen to the church, the Baedekers, the wiki.
Alternatively, you can opt for the sink or swim therapy. This is known to provide daily exercise to many a lifeguard.
And purple bloated corpses give no advice either. Who cares for what the drowning man knew?
So, if you need a starting point, and a direction, you will take risks.
No risk, no gain. Blood and vomit. Sweat, at the very least.
Suppose art is truth. To what there is. To what you are.
Breathe deep. Keep calm and focus on what there is.
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in Blog EN April 22, 2019, 18:49
Water standing still, air standing still, people in coffins, these all smell bad.
Movement, flow and change should be our top objectives.
Stay calm but keep on pressing that shutter.
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in Blog EN October 09, 2018, 16:02
We walked along the waterfront.
I pulled out the camera and took a shot of gulls gliding along. I turned round and aimed at tall risers opposite the sea. Bland.
A passer with a smartphone spotted in the pose. One of the two poses they seem to spend their lives in. The other one is that of a zombie.
I took a long shot of the white wall in the falling sun. Bland. I ordered my assistant and lover to pose against the wall. I took some shots to get used to the new lens I want to use for my future portrait work. Bland.
A passer with a smartphone spotted in the pose. One of the two poses they seem to spend their lives in. As sure as a Greek statue. Repetitive and predictable.
Green opposite the paseo seemed enticing. I took some shots, noticed my settings were way off. Bland. Corrected the settings took some more shots. Reviewed, deleted.
A passer with a smartphone spotted in the pose. One of the two poses they seem to spend their lives in. Very soon we will see medical reports on an epidemics of spinal cord injuries.
The sun died and now there was only this eternal glow that lasts shorter each day as we go into autumn. I meant to take a shot of the light but I felt numbed. I looked at the screen but did not press the shutter.
A passer with a smartphone spotted in the pose. He keeps his back to the golden glow. My lover and assistant looked at the person and announced: 'There is another photographer taking the image you do'.
He was not. He was taking a selfish.
Keep calm. Beware of zombie photographers.
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Catch of the day
in Blog EN October 04, 2018, 2:49
Today I went to a more remote location. It is about two miles from our boat to the old town. I had big hopes - dreaming up old door knobs, basalt cobblestones and wooden balconies.
It did not go well from the start. I walked with my head full of fuzzy thoughts, definitely not 'in the zone'. Then I noticed my bladder was full too. A good start of an artist's journey.
Once there, it did not go well either. The sun was still high, the light was hard. There was nothing decorative, nothing intense enough to deserve a shot. I wandered about, shooting a mural here, a tree trunk there, then a city sewer lid. I discovered another mural, showing Pussy Power, only to notice another talentless ignorant had been there before me and added a most inept simile of a penis next to Pussy's lips. I felt my day had been tainted.
On my return home, I noticed there were only 57 files on the card. My lowest ever number of shots per trip. I knew that with my lower than 1/100 hit ratio I was in serious trouble now. No good images meant no dinner. My beautiful censoresse's rules are simple.
I started editing. I got one. I got another. Then I saved Pussy's breasts and heart. Then I discovered the sewer's lid was made of gold. I ended up with 24 decent images. They are decent in my eye. My censoresse says they are fine.
I got a bowl of couscous with stewed veggies. And a second helping.
Stay calm and keep on making images.
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My photography budget
in Blog EN September 23, 2018, 4:33
I was a coward, most of my life.
This one time, I decided I would act bravely. I decided I would not buy any 'decent', 'second best' or 'best value' equipment. I will get the best lenses, the best camera. To avoid any excuses that others can make better images BECAUSE THEY HAVE THE BETTER EQUIPMENT.
With no excuses, I will have only one choice: think, shoot, repeat. Make better images.
Keep your photographic fingers crossed for me!
My partner will be surprised when she notices the new balance on her credit card.
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in Blog EN September 19, 2018, 16:59
When I am shooting and I am alone, I am hunting.
I will set off when the sun goes low in the sky. My eyes are wide open, searching for images. My mind is processing and creating visions. My finger is light on the trigger.
I am intense. I am focused. Outwardly friendly, but otherwise absent to others. I move fast but I haste not. I give things as much time as they ask for, then move on.
Often, I will return long past dark, with hundreds of images. The battery flat. Tired, even exhausted, and happy. I think this exhaustion is absolutely required for happiness.
Next morning, when I browse to select the images, at times I will find few are good enough.
At other times there is not even enough catch to feed a cat.
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in Blog EN September 15, 2018, 19:41
Every time I look at newer cameras coming out these days, I notice their high ISO got just higher. As if the manufacturers lost their hearts for delivering simply better tools, and concentrated on marketable, if pretty useless 'unique selling points'.
Unique selling points sell more, worse, cameras. Now that the camera can do anything, why place a photographer at one side of it at all?
A good camera gives minimal possibilities. Asking the photographer to deliver. Some very best dancers dance barefoot.
There might be an accidental good side to this pointless race though. Very soon we will be able to get the camera any time of the night and go out, make more images.
Just think of all the Swedes and Norwegians.
They want to be loved too.
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What is your story?
in Blog EN September 14, 2018, 22:03
I got asked about my story.
I think we all own a story, but we only start to see its pieces some time into the life. Special, unique people, will see their story early on. These are blessed, and damned.
Once we know there is a story, when there is a story, does it affect what happens next? Does the story reflect in our day's work: in our poems, in our images?
And do our images and poems and other works of smaller or bigger importance create our future story?
Do you become what you believe you are? Or do you need a pope to tell you what to make with the rest of your life?
Sometimes a story is like a litany of questions.
Ask them then listen to the silence.
Keep on making images.
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May Beauty Be Everywhere Around Me