People in Pictures
I first started learning about photography with my uncle Stephen back in 2002 who was a professional wedding photographer. Obviously Uncle Stephen is a pro at taking photos of people but he also loves landscapes too. His knowledge is still valuable to this day and I strive to be just like him with my photographic skills. I owe a lot to my Uncle Stephen, for having the faith in me when I started out and for helping me every step of the way with my photography.
One photographic adventure sticks in my mind, when I managed to convince Stephen it would be a great idea to get up at silly o’clock and photograph the sunrise at Salford quays. As part of this, we wanted photos of the bridge, Stephen took so many great shots, while I grumbled that people were walking over the bridge ‘getting in the way’. I am thankful he didn’t abandon me at this point!
I took on board so much of Stephen’s advice, all except one piece… people are good. I waited and waited and ignored Stephen’s advice that it would look great for perspective to have people in the distance of the shot, then I waited some more…. At the time I was relieved to finally get the shot without any people in, now looking back I wonder what was my issue with people? It is a bridge, that people use… why not get shots of them using it? Because Stephen was right!
I have spent the last 12 years keeping the 2 types of photography separate, people are for events, portraits and weddings, whereas for travel and architecture photographs, people are banished.
This has just been the fact of my photographic life up until a couple of months ago, when someone pointed out how the locals in one of my Havana photographs ‘made’ the picture. I had unconsciously mixed the 2 types! My photography was evolving and I hadn’t even realised it.
I am proud of my current portfolio, but looking back at the small selection of people within travel photographs I have now given myself the task to capture more real life situation, because essentially that is what my portfolio is lacking. More often than not it’s the mixture of architecture and people that create the atmosphere of a town / city.