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05-02-10, 01:50 AM
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: East Anglia UK
(This is a new shot made with Carl)
Thanks for the comment!...
RE comp and exposure... my lens and the shape of the room did not permit me any more leeway in composition... I had my back to a wall... and this window was the only source of natural light in the room... exposing for the dark areas would have over exposed the face completely... so I spot metered a highlight upon the left of Carl's forehead to compensate for the bright sunlight there... sometimes we just have to work with what we have got!
As for "setting up" this or any other shot... thats a distinct no-no for me... to gain trust and confidence from someone and be given the honor of photographing them... is something I value and I don't place my ego onto the situation and try to arrange the truth... and the truth here is Carl has had a very painful and lonely life... so your suggestion of a setup... I feel very far from reality... and would for sure have made Carl very, very uncomfortable...
I hope to make portraits that reflect honestly the people I am photographing... not impose my ideas or constructs of what their life and life experience might be like... how could I ever understand what life has been like for Carl?... but like you suggest, we all have different ideas on this!...
I never intimated that I wanted the story and the image critiqued as one intertwining piece, the story is there purely to explain Carl's condition and the story was in the news the day of my initial posting... the B&W was taken months before the announcement of the Governments apology to victims of the Thalidomide scandal.
My biggest struggle is, I love to shoot in low natural light... so fast glass and a full frame sensor would be great... or a really good film SLR but I just can't afford kit like that!... so I try and do the best I can with what I have got.
As for my own take of the B&W... taken during our first ever session together and very informal, maybe only 4 shots taken during conversation... I like and respect Carl's defiant stance... he takes hold of the camera with his gaze into the lens.
To have the life he has had and has... and still have the courage, inner resolve and strength to face life and face a camera leaves me speechless... I feel he's facing the camera and the subsequent audience with grit and courage and defiance... and I am sincerely proud of him and incredibly honored to have been permitted to make his portrait.
We met as tentative strangers and through photography have become friends... the photographs we have made have given him a new confidence, and a sense that he is able to redress the balance of how people view him... that he is able to be seen for him, the man he is... rather than how the world so often imposes an identity or character upon him and that he knows that my camera in no way judges him and that for me is the greatest reward possible.
Last edited by PolaroidSky; 05-02-10 at
. Reason: added texts
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