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Creative Portraits

Monday, August 17th, 2009 by | Filed Under: Digital Photography


You see the perfect shot through the lens and in your mind, the camera has already clicked. Alas, you are getting ahead of yourself. As you arrive at the set of the outdoor shoot, your heart sinks when you see the rainy mess that you had envisioned as the backdrop. But you can’t let the weather get you down, the show must go on. So you head to the model’s apartment: your vision may be crushed but your camera is still intact.

You step inside and are greeted by a bay window and chair. The model, seemingly at ease in the space she calls her home, draws you in. Now you too are at ease. Again you see the perfect shot. Again the camera has already clicked. You must move quickly to catch reality up with your mind.

She basks in the natural light as she faces the window, sitting regally in the chair. With the clutter gone the model is all the camera has to focus on. Moving quickly to prepare for the shot, you switch to manual mode with a moderate shutter speed to ensure adequate exposure. You will use the fill flash for the shoots away from the window. A shallow depth of field will allow you to emphasize the model’s face and eyes, making the window irrelevant.


The camera engages her and she in turn engages you. The two of you begin a salsa to the rhythm of the shutter’s click.

You want to lose yourself in the music, but must remember the importance of this photo shoot. You must see her as not only a model, but as a piece of fine art. As you draw emotion from her, so too must you draw emotion from yourself, propelling yourself further in the field of creative photography. You dance around each shot. She relaxes, you tense, itching to capture the perfect angle.

The music stops.


And then you click your camera. The salsa has ended and you are left in a final pose, the model dangling from your arms. You stand frozen, but the camera has captured the scene. Along with a sigh of exhaustion, you smile. The shot is perfect and the model smiles, happy with the result.

You begin to search for something; another form of inspiration. You see a full body lounge chair in front of the window. But you slow yourself down, hoping the model will catch up. You morph her into an art piece, entangling her limbs to compose the perfect shot.

More light, you need more light. Again the salsa begins. You dance around her searching for that perfect light. Full flash elongates her attitude, begging for the attention of the camera. Before you click, you have her look to the ground.

Snap. Snap. Snap. You smile as she retains her pose.

Soon you pack your equipment into the car. Check in hand, you leave perhaps more satisfied than your client, although the model’s glow seemed words enough to describe her approval of the final shot.

After a formal goodbye you scuttle to your car through the drizzle, but stop. You look up and lose yourself in the rhythm of the raindrops.


~Zahid Javali

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