Summer Days & Chambray Jumpsuits
There is a certain level of comfort you have to have to take portraits of people. Not the self soothing comfort that calms your nerves when you feel anxious, although that certainly does help. More like the confidence and personabilty to understand, empathize, and relate to someone in any state of being. In my experience, if you can’t look a person in the eye and have a conversation, how do you plan to take a photo of them and capture the real person? I have a tendency to overanalyze and complicate relatively simple things like taking a photo, but the connection between photographer and subject must be there; an understanding of what is happening and what the person who is being photographed is to encapsulate. It’s not everyday you stay still in one place for a certain amount of time and hold one position while someone stares at you and clicks buttons.
I personally like to have my photo taken, but I don’t always like the result. Jade is similar. Since we work together on almost every style shoot, I am the one who takes her photo. I have learned a lot from Jade, not just about being a photographer, but being an artist and a reader of a situation. I tend to see images as a whole and not as individual elements coming together. Jade has taught me to focus on individual elements such as lighting, angle, how high or low I am standing, the tilt of my camera, even the lines which organize the back and foregrounds. It all plays a role in creating a composed image. On top of that, there is the comfort you must have with the subject and with yourself. That is a lot of things to keep track of at one time. In the past, I dismissed many of these elements in order to hurry up and “just get the shot.” I rushed and the results were usually less than favorable. To shoot work you are proud of, one must focus, and not just focus the lens. Ultimately, the comfort that comes from finding your niche with whatever label you give yourself, helps you create and creating is a reason for living. This is what I have learned from becoming more comfortable with myself as a photographer. It’s just a way of life.
Once all of those elements come together and you have a fine tuned understanding of what it takes, a photo can go from a photograph, to a work of art. I still have hard time calling myself a photographer. I still have a lot to work on when capturing all of the individual elements that go into creating a truly special image. That being said, I am extremely pleased with the way this shoot turned out. Jade’s natural beauty and elegance just radiate from these photographs. We incorporated this summer look in three location; at Tea Bar in Northeast, Portland; outside of Congregation Beth Israel synagogue in Northwest, Portland; and lastly, at the new Blue Star Donuts on Northwest 23rd.
There is no secret to creating an ideal, lifestyle fashion shoot that I know of. The only solid advice I have is follow the light: go where you know there will be interesting lighting. Go where you won’t have to be completely miserable in the outside elements. Make sure its a place that is visually pleasing and goes well with the looks your shooting. Nothing forced. When you force a shoot, its not going to be the best end product, and why waste your time?
I’m so glad we took advantage of the incredible weather and the fact that we both actually had a day off at the same time. For us, a perfect summer day is filled with leisure. We just let the day unfold. It tends to include long walks, hand holding, treats of some kind (usually in the form of ice cream or doughnuts), polaroid taking and intimate conversation over numerous cups of coffee. I’d love to hear about your ideal summer day and your experience becoming a photographer…
Loft Chambray Jumpsuit / Daniel Wellington Classic Sheffield Watch / Sonoma Life + Style Ballet Flats / Frank Walton Walton Style Sunglasses in Malted / Madewell Leather Sleeved Blazer / Jason Wu Grand Tourista Bag / Chanel Rouge Allure Lip Color in Incandescente