Friday, February 20, 2009

Julie (41/100) - Under renovation

Bob-th-builder came with what - to my ear - was a distinct French accent. Now, admittedly, my ears aren't what they used to be! His name is Harvey and he was doing a fit-out down in the Old Teachers' College. He wrote his email on a scrap and asked if I would please send him some photos.

Now he will see how nervous he made me and how out-of-focus he is. C'est la vie - the drought she is broken, my friends.


bitingmidge said...

Sorry Julie, I don't like this one!

I tried one of these last week, but it didn't even come as close to working as this one. I think if the subject is to remain anonymous, there needs to be a strong element in the picture to warrant that, such as in the "Hand Portrait" shot a few days ago, or alternatively some strong composition in the form of the subject.

Perhaps if his whole body had been in shot, AND his leg had been outside his arm, the eye could have had somewhere to wander?

I like the third option the best, shame about the focus.

Crumbs I've become a hard marker! Is there any wonder I haven't taken any shots for a while!

Julie said...

Hard marking is good at this stage of the project. For me it is. I am trying to break through this composition think. I have to do it in theory first before it even begins to come to the fore when I am shooting.

The essence here is the need to "have somewhere for the eye to wander" and this seems to require that the image have elements of depth - hence the leg on the outside leads to the arm, leads to the body. This is the complexity of context.

Now another point you make is about anonymity ... a portrait does not require a fully visible face if there is an element in the image that warrants this. This is a compositional challenge: take yesterday. He was doing something interesting but I could only come from the side or from behind and with the lens I have I had to get close. But I also had to get out of the way quickly as he was measuring, putting it behind him and getting the next bit of board to measure. I could not get in front of him at all ...

I will try to find another person doing something that restricts me equally and see what I come up with. I am not up to asking someone who is working to pose in a specific way. If someone is "playing" it might be a bit easier.

Ann said...

I prefer number 3 as well. Good luck to you for trying, I chickened out on asking the plumber this morning. Not sure I would have been able to get a good composition anyway. That's how I feel about someone who's working, you need to be quick and can't interrupt what they are doing so you have to be able to see the shot first.

Joan Elizabeth said...

I beg to differ. I really like this one Julie and in particular the shot you have chosen. For me it shows his action and concentration. Perhaps surprisingly it is one of my all time favourites.