Defining My Style - Portrait Photography

Style is usually something that defines your work. Something that is recognisable in all of the work that you produce, that allows people to distinguish your work from everybody else. This is something that can take decades to achieve, but something that I am constantly working on.

I have recently re edited some older shoots, working on getting a cohesive feel to my images. Having recently read Annie Leibovitz’s At Work and some interviews with the great Peter Lindbergh as well as his book Shadows on the wall, I now have a different thought pattern and view for the kind of portraits I want to create. With this new way of thinking still fresh in my mind I went through a couple of older shoots, picking images that I would have usually looked over, and edited them in a way in which I feel represented the feeling I wanted to portray. Previously I had gotten a bit lost in creating images that did not necessarily have a deeper meaning or portray anything at all. Without meaning the photographs become meaningless. Snap shots of a person instead of capturing their true self. This is a lesson that I am glad I have learned as it will help me now create more powerful portraits.

I have always admired the feeling of timelessness that you get from black and white images. The lack of colour also helps to keep the focus on the subject without the distraction many colours can have. These are the the main reasons for choosing black and white for these portraits. I am not saying that colour has no place in my work, its just for the time being, black and white best portrays how I want the images to feel. I have also chosen to reduce the contrast from my usual portraits giving a softer look to the images, but at the same time keeping them dark and moody. I am a fan of the moodier look and a darker black point that slides away into a soft vignette.

More of this style of work will be coming throughout 2019 as well as some new fine art projects!

- Kalum