One of the most important things I have learned as a photographer over the past couple years is photographing "true". When it comes to portraits, especially with a basic environment or a studio background, it can be a huge challenge capturing each new face in a different, unique way. Often I think many of us freeze in front of a camera, always trying to "look perfect" for each shot. Don't get me wrong, it is super intimidating and I even find myself extremely uncomfortable with a huge lens pointing at me. Although I have had my fair share of awkward portraits, I do have a few favourites of myself. Ironically enough, my favourites are usually photos I wasn't trying to look my best in...I was simply being my true, natural self. I have been pondering about this for a while, trying to figure out how I, as a photographer, can help models STAY true throughout the duration of a shoot.
Put simply, one of the most important jobs as a photographer is engaging with subjects, making them feel comfortable. If a subject is awkward around a photographer, more times than not, they're nervous, or uncomfortable about taking photos. I have experienced being photographed by many photographers over the past few years. and have found the best portraits of myself are when I felt comfortable in the environment I was in. Whether or not I knew the artist, the best photographers were extremely personable, relaxed, confident, and always in a good mood. Although there are many things I have been learning in school over the past two years, I think the most valuable information I have taken away is building a connection with subjects in the moment of the shoot.
I will admit I haven't perfected this technique by any means, but it is definitely something I have been working on a lot lately. Since I realize the value of a photographer who can bond with their subjects so quickly and effectively, one of my ultimate goals is to do the same with each and every one of my subjects. Like anything, it takes a whole lot of practice to master something. Being in the Photographic Technologies program at NAIT, it has encouraged me immensely to keep improving, and I have definitely seen great progress in myself over the past couple years.
This session with Hannah was one of my favourites. She has this amazingly bold personality that I admire so much. Her inner beauty definitely came out to compliment her stunning looks during this session and I am so glad we were able to capture it in a way that really justified her personality. I think this session was a great example of shooting "true". Hannah did a great job expressing herself throughout this shoot; I hope you enjoy!
That's all for now,