So I mentioned in my last post that I believe it takes two to tango in order to have the intention of creatively making artistic photographs together on a portrait session. I’m going to dive into that a bit more for this post…
First; so much is about the relationship and trust that I’m looking to foster with my clients in the work being created. It’s huge and I really feel like if that’s not there in the first place, getting into the mindset of making art or even just beautiful portraits simply won’t happen. When the relationship isn’t there, it’s fully apparent in the image and it’s easy to tell because more often than not people are just standing there with fake smiles or blank / tense looks that aren’t themselves. I’ll be the first to admit there can be a grey area on the blank stare thing and beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Example: In the image to the right is Jenn. Jenn’s pretty awesome….I learned this after an 18 hour engagement session (really). I ask….is Jenn giving a blank boring stare or is she in the moment of being herself in the arms of her fiance? That’s for you to decide….
So getting people to be themselves is crucial and I take it as my responsibility to develop that relationship in any kind of way necessary in order to get that to happen. That’s true even if that comes down to tiring people out to the point they can relax and forget there’s a camera there ;) Bottom line; trust and relationship are crazy important. If that’s not in place it becomes totally reflective in the photography, vice versa. By the way, for my wedding clients, this is why I feel like the engagement session is so important! I really feel that relationship and trust should totally be in place for the wedding day and hope the clients I continue to attract feel the same way.
So what am I talking about with the title of this post “it’s cool to be a kid”? Well, I think the other part of collaboratively making artistic photographs is a willingness to have fun and let loose that sense of play. At some point in our adult lives, people become too “adult-like” and dare I say boring. We worry too much about what other people think of us and I notice myself do it often. So many of us are unwilling to foster a sense of play because it’s immature, childish or stupid to do so….forget that.
While recently listening to the podcast “Camera Dojo“, the hosts Kerry and David described how they tell their clients “if it feels like you’re doing something awkward, you’re probably doing it right”. Totally true! We have to be willing to step out of the box a bit, and have that sense of play in order to create artistic photographs that celebrate life.
If there’s anything that being involved in the arts throughout my life has taught me, it’s that we should never lose that sense of play or really what’s the point of it all? At the very least that wall we’ve built up needs to come tumbling down to take any kind of portrait session to the next level creatively and artistically. Soooo…..once that relationship is in place and once the willingness to let loose like a kid is there, then we can begin that process of creatively making artistic photographs together. And that’s where the awesomeness and fun of a portrait session really comes in…..just part of why I love this art form of photography.