I talk to myself. A lot. My kids don't even notice it anymore. I figure out problems with myself, and contemplate shots with myself. Turns out, I am pretty good listener!
The other day, I was deep in conversation. Again, with myself. I was in mid shoot, and had a moment of "I need to stop doing that."
What I was referring to, was how I angle my shots. I very rarely shoot straight on. Meaning, the subject is never centered in the frame, and I usually have my camera cockeyed, or I am bent over like I threw my back out.
This way of shooting comes naturally to me. I don't really know why, but it does. What makes me chuckle is that I love, (and I mean this with every fiber of my being) LOVE straight, equal lines. So it's sort of bizarre that I love the off center weird nature that I shoot in.
As I work, I keep thinking that I need to stop doing this. People like square. They like "normal."
Or do they?
Sunday was Oscar night. I didn't get to see it, becuase I was working BUT I did see Justin's performance (OMG I love him) and the Vanity Fair shots the next day. Mark Seliger is the man who gets to shoot the celebs after they win for Vanity Fair. This is my dream job. So, I sort of obsess over it.
What caught my eye immediately this year was that he also, doesn't shoot straight on. I mean, some frames he did but many are not. You can tell, because the walls are not perfectly vertical. That means his camera was not vertical.
So maybe there is something to being "left of center" and a little off.
How does this translate to you? Well, what I notice when I am out and about and see people trying to photograph their kids, is they are literally standing there trying to be "perfect" and by doing so....they miss the moment. Sure, I have an eye for this stuff, but rather than waste your energy worrying....just take the photo. Don't worry about angles just take the image as you see it.
Perfect is not real and overrated. What is beautiful and raw, is the ability to see your kids or dogs or whatever you are photographing as they are. In the moment. Who they are. Be it an Oscar winner or a homeless person the shots that speak to the hearts of people are the ones that are authentic.
This happens to be my favorite image that I have seen so far from that night.
Emma Stone being hugged by her friend Brie Larson after she won her Oscar. It's candid, not perfect, and wonderful. I promise you, whoever took this (I can not locate a credit) just took a trillion images of the moment. I can't imagine what that felt like. I do know however, that it's raw, real and it's soooooooo good.
So friends, when you are out there taking pics of whatever it is that makes you happy. Just take the image as you see it. In the moment. Don't worry about perfect or straight. Just take the shot.
Because like life, if you blink? You'll miss it.
If you are still into learning more about how I work, I am holding a class here in Phoenix April 1, 2017. Spots are limited.
Email me for details.
Oscar Photo Credit: Unknown
Edited by: IBCLLC 2017