September 27, 2012 at 11:14 am #972September 27, 2012 at 2:49 pm #995
Now a comment about the photograph! The tonal range is great. The focussing is spot on. Those are the technical things. I like the background. Cropping is fine on right. Wonder whether you have anything more at the bottom of the picture so we could see all of the hair. She has a couple of marks on her neck that I would be tempted to try and remove and, for my taste, she has overdone the botox.
This photo would easily make the top end of our GENERAL section.September 27, 2012 at 3:40 pm #996
This is beautifully lit. The lighting and exposure render the textures of her skin and hair really well; and the specular highlights on her eye lids and hair add to the effect. The soft lighting and the skillfully rendered textures are very sensuous, which is entirely in keeping with the youth and beauty of the model and the feeling and atmosphere of the image. (Perhaps if you were being pernickety you might have put a touch of light on the background to get a bit more separation?)
The overall line of the composition lies along the Baroque diagonal (bottom left to top right) of an almost – but not quite – square frame, which gives a general direction of flow with which the upward tilt of her face contrasts to create a dynamic tension. And this subtle tension in the lines of the composition (which the not-quite-squareness of the frame enhances) seems to reflect and support the sense of inner emotional tension that the pose and expression convey.
It is the emotional tone of the picture that seems to me problematic. The apparent emotional intensity is somewhat at odds with the obviously posed formality of the portrait, so that the viewer is left wondering whether the emotion is genuine or merely acted for the sake of… what? And this doubt shifts the interpretation of the image away from taking it as a portrait, for it seems not to be inviting empathy with a fellow human being, or any effort for recognition of another person’s state of mind. Rather, it feels more like a constructed glamour image of some sort, which invites the viewer into a relationship that is ultimately essentially shallow.
So it seems to me a technically skillful glamour image of a beautiful young woman, of the sort that might appear in a fashion magazine, which one can’t feel any strong reason to engage with more than superficially. But as an exercise in making that kind of image, it’s a very accomplished photograph.
September 27, 2012 at 11:17 pm #1004
- This reply was modified 6 years, 3 months ago by Ian McNab.
As always your portraits are lovely Dolores. She is so reminicsent of fifties glamour photography.Would I show more of her hair, perhaps just ever so slightly.I think her eyes are fanstatic she looks lost in the moment. She definetly should be entered into one of the print competitions. No the botox is fine, she’s a young woman so her face should be ;ine free, though can see why John might see it as being frozen and Ian thinking she’s overposed. But I think shes just right as what she is, A Glamour Model.September 28, 2012 at 12:01 am #1006
Hands up all those who would like an ultimately shallow relationship with the above? Maybe even just to hold her coat for a while? Down Ken!!!! 😉
Seriously, I did photograph this rather beautiful, extremely tall, and very, very young lady at an exhibition. I caught this at a moment when after smiling and pouting for the dozens of lenses that had been poked at her for about half an hour, she was becoming very tired, trying not to show it, closed her eyes and sincerely to me just looked like she needed to escape and wished they would all go away for a minute. Probably I should have called it “Escaping the lens” but I put a quick name on just to post it.
So Ian you judge her a little harshly … remember models are human too. I dug her out of some images from last year I had forgotten about. I have lots of her because I am ashamed to say that one of those lenses was of course mine. As you know I am always looking for off guard moments. By botox I expect John means the lips which are very Bardot’ esque and I believe real as she was seriously young. I removed very few blemishes as her skin was nearly perfect. I do have the full image with longer hair but I found the lace sleeve on her arm a little distracting and that and the longer hair are not as sharp. I felt a judge would pick up on that so I tried the crop and felt it made it a stronger portrait. I’ll post the other version tomorrow if I have time (with some suggested adjustments) and you can be the judges.
Many thanks for the critique. Very helpful. 🙂
September 28, 2012 at 6:42 am #1008
- This reply was modified 6 years, 3 months ago by D.Williams.
Without any back story, all the viewer has to go on is the photograph, and that’s what I was doing. Offered a photograph, a viewer has to ask: “what’s this photograph about? what’s it saying? why should I spend time looking at it seriously?” (Now that you’ve described the situation, I still have to ask, “If I or you were actually tired, and closed our eyes in momentary exhaustion, would that be the angle of our head? Would that be the expression on our faces? Would our lips and mouth be in that position?”)
Photographs of models are often images of young women affecting, with various degrees of skill, some human emotion or other that they are not actually feeling; and often you’re left thinking, “I wonder if she ever actually has such an expression and bodily attitude when alone with her partner?”. After looking at hundreds of such photographs, you do start to ask, “What are all these photographs for?” I suppose my concern is about the nature of the genre.
This is clearly a very beautiful young woman; wouldn’t you just love to catch her (or any model) sharing a joke with her Mum, and photograph her laughing uproariously – and for real? So, as I hope I’ve made clearer, I wasn’t judging the person depicted, but the photograph as a thing in itself – an image, an evocation, to reflect on and relate to. (I’m afraid I was taking your photograph as an art object, and trying to reflect on it seriously in that light!)
As for John’s remark, he must speak for himself, but I thought he might be referring to the smoothness of her skin. I actually think the effect is produced by slightly over-exposing it – a technique Andy Gotts uses with younger women to enhance the smoothness of the skin without the need for heavy ‘beauty retouching’. This works very well when, as here, the person has very smooth skin for starters. (On my screen, it looks natural, and not retouched.)
I do hope you have a photograph of her having a laugh with the MUA over a cup of tea during a break! 😉September 28, 2012 at 1:08 pm #1034
I understand completely Ian (you’ve been taking those thinking pills again haven’t you? 😉 ). I suppose I have two reactions in front of me. One is an instant gut Wow! and the other is a more considered long thought out one where the viewer goes deeper and questions the authenticity and motive of the pose, relationship with the model etc. I suppose it is the difference between browsing and buying? As in “Ooooh I really Love that” …. to do I want to part with cash and buy it , take it home, see it every day for the rest of my life on my wall and how will that make me feel? A lot of us then decide not to buy after all. But …. an instant gut reaction is important and I do love a WOW photo and love to see them on my wall. Beautiful Professional models in dreamy poses are of course 2 a penny (they can’t win … I wish I had her problems lol) so I will have a look at what I have and see if there are any sharp ones of her laughing as I do know I caught a few. She was a lovely natural girl. I suspect you will prefer the images integrity but would it sit as well on a wall? We will have to see what I have and if I can make it work. As you know I love a challenge. Watch this space! 😉
Ps I suppose the other conclusion I have from the two reactions is that John is ultimately (or instantly) far more shallow than you Ian! Shocking!!!! however a WOW is what I’m usually after so in his case it worked perfectly 😉October 2, 2012 at 11:38 pm #1093
WowOctober 3, 2012 at 12:56 am #1097
Someone else with hidden shallows! 😉 Thanks for the reaction Paul.October 3, 2012 at 5:08 pm #1119
DID YOU GET HER PHONE NUMBER DELORES???I NEED A PICK UP RIGHT NOWOctober 3, 2012 at 6:57 pm #1126
She seemed to know you Ken …. that’s why she’s dreaming! 😉October 6, 2012 at 10:20 am #1178
Ah, I’ve found where the gang are hanging out! In big brother’s place. I’ll have to behave myself now.
I think this is a really well caught shot. Technically its excellent, sharp and well exposed. The dark background means there’s no distractions and you’ve caught her in a natural unposed moment. The only thing I would have changed is to frame her more centrally to include more of the back of her head and less of the face in front of it.October 6, 2012 at 1:35 pm #1181
Pete, you are usually right (apart from the behaving yourself resolution … which stands little chance of lasting a week! 😉 ) but the back of her hair was quite mess, as it was lower down so it was a needs must and a touch of idleness decision.
Cloning it out but still getting a realistic edge on the hair would have been difficult and I did try. I could hear a judge asking if it was necessary and where the real picture started, so went for a closer crop to make it a stronger portrait. I did put this together quickly for the forum, so maybe I should change the crop a little and loose a smidge of the black? I could put back a bit of the hair, but to me the face and angle of head were the most important things rather than the back of her head although I appreciate that the position in the frame is crutial. I will twiddle a bit. Thanks for the advice as always! 🙂
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