Following on from a tutorial last week, Andy Vaines (Year Tutor), suggested that I consider trying to capture in my final set of images the range of responses that I have evoked from the middle-children who have sat for me. I had already been considering a montage involving multiple images from each shoot so this fit quite nicely with this idea. Andy suggested maybe doing an edit with simply smiles/laughs and then an edit which was not so positive and then maybe a combination.
After exploring a few alternatives I decided that I would use 4 images from each shoot but keep each shoot, and subject, separate:
Speaking with Andy again yesterday on this idea, he has suggested that I should actually select one image from each set which to me signifies that middle-child and possibly have that one image larger with the 3 alternative views available but a little smaller. Rather than leaving it to the viewer to decide which expression is the most appropriate for the subject I need to make a statement about what my take on the subject for each individual is.
Alex was the first of the middle-children to sit for me but I asked him if we could try again. Looking back over the series of shoots I didn’t think that initial images of Alex fit into the set overall and I was keen to ensure he was included in the final edit. So here he is again…..many thanks Alex!
Shaun is the third of five siblings and had never heard of middle-child syndrome.
We are heading back into the darkroom next week to do some wet-process printing and as part of that assignment we have been asked to consider what different films and photo-papers have to offer. So I took out a medium format camera, the mobile studio-lighting and set up a quick portrait photoshoot with a slight difference.
The first 4 images were shot on Ilford XP2 C41 film which is an ISO400 film. C41 means that while the film is black & white it is processed in the same way as standard colour film. The second 4 images were shot on a different film, Ilford FP4 which is an ISO125 film and meant I had to process it myself by hand. The images below are all digital scans from the negatives.
It will be interesting to see how the different papers and films impact the overall aesthetic of the images…..will keep you posted.
Kully brought his children to me last year for some portraits and graciously answered my request on facebook for middle-children volunteers.
As a big thank you I have offered to shoot a family portrait for him in the near future as his youngest has recently realised that he isn’t in any of the family portraits they have around the house and is feeling a little excluded. The fact that he wasn’t born when they were done doesn’t seem to be any consolation at all!
So here are some of images from the shoot with Kully:
I demonstrated a clamshell lighting set-up a few posts ago where I deliberately over-exposed the subject a little in order to bleach the skin somewhat to give a smooth and bright appearance to the face.
I’m not sure my craggy, tired features did the look justice but a youthful and fresh-faced Sam stepped in the other day to give me a second chance.
Sam was after some high-key, bright images to use on his own website and blog as his profile pic.
You can see a third light in action in many of the shots on camera right behind Sam and lighting the side of his head, neck and shoulder to provide a little separation from the background.
And my personal favourite, as it sums up the fun we had:
I posted some images of a shoot I did with Jess a few days ago and my personal favourite image from the whole set was one that I included in a set of 4 in the original post. I think it offers a sense of vulnerability which the others don’t have.
Going through the contact sheet yesterday with Sam Finister – a classmate – was interesting as without any help from me at all he pointed to the same image and said it was the pick of the bunch. On that basis I thought it warranted to be posted on a blog in it’s own right.
Not only that but I had cropped it square and quite tight to fit in with the set I had included it in. Returning to the original I think the vulnerable quality of the image is only strengthened by a wider crop and so I have decided to include both here.
By all means let me know which version you prefer and why.