I wanted to challenge myself and do something that would involve people. I thought about how these images would be received by those i photographed, and i wanted to produce images which they would not commonly have in their homes; but most importantly images which they would appreciate and be proud of.
I chose black and white photos because there's a quality and skill to producing really beautiful black and white photos which i wanted to try. I also like the idea of neutralizing the images so that the subjects consume or own every part of the photo.
What was going on in the world and did any of these events influence your thinking at the time?
A common theme in the media is poverty, especially in South Auckland. I feel for all those out there struggling to make ends meet. I'm so thankful for the sacrifices my mom went through to invest in our lives. My sisters and i are so lucky and thankful for everything shes done for us. She taught us a lot of lessons about faith, love and perseverance. It's not easy, and sometimes its difficult to see the beauty in the little things in life. It's taxing on peoples spirits.
I am very fortunate to have this opportunity to take photos for friends and family, especially these types of portraits, which wouldn't normally sit in our homes. That's probably the most exciting thing about this project; that is to be able to produce something that would be too costly to get done professionally. If i was to weigh up $100 worth or groceries or getting a portrait done, the groceries would win hands down.
What photographic genre and subgenre does your work fit into?
Editorial > Life > Portraiture
The photos i have taken are close up head shots.
Who are your photographic influences?
- Yousuf Karsh: An amazing photographer who photographed portraits of significant figures in the 20th century. His photos showcase a different perspective of subjects who have been capture quite extensively.
- Sue Bryce: A renown glamour portrait photographer who shoots the majority of her work using natural light. Her photos are exquisite and draws on the assets of her subjects.
I will be shooting in black and white. I will be experimenting with lighting both natural and studio lights. I will also be considering the type of backgrounds whether to use lighting, backdrop or natural surroundings.
I will also be looking at angles which work with different bone structures, shapes and features. I will be shooting close up photos, so i will be paying attention to how the light sits on my subjects face as well as varied contrast from textures and tones.
Are you influenced by artists working in other disciplines?
At the moment ive been looking at paintings of Rembrandt Harmenszoon van Rijn and Leonard Da Vinci. I've been looking at their paintings to reference the lighting techniques and portraiture compositions.