Let’s talk about me for once. Well, since it’s still COVID time and I’m not shooting that much it might be a good time to do something different and give you some background insights about all of this photography work I’m doing. So let’s talk a bit about me.
A lot of photographers progress from rookie beginners which are happy to create a sharp image and like to photograph everything up to very passionate and experienced photographers who know exactly where they want to go and how to do that. Note that that goal to where to go to will shift continuously for most photographers because when they are learning more their goals will probably change as well.
So this whole path from rookie to the never reached dot on the horizon can be seen as the photographers journey. When learning more in depth about photography photographers inevitably will stumble upon a thing called style. Every photographer has its own unique style. And the better photographers have a style which can be recognised by other people by just watching a photograph of them and knowing immediately that they have created that photograph. The part about immediately knowing who the photographer is has to be taken with a grain of salt of course but the further this situation is reached, the more distinct is that photographers style.
All nice and great about style but didn’t I say that I would write about me for once? Okay. Here it comes. I know that I have had the style struggle as well during my photography journey. And in the beginning I found it very hard to understand what a style exactly is and how to get one. I discovered there were no (online) shops to get some style. Too bad. I have been thinking a lot about that style thing. And actually the last years when shooting a lot of portraits and reviewing my work I discovered that it was there. That style. My style. Without buying it. It suddenly hit me. There is was.
So what does this mean? How can a style suddenly be there? Well. A style forms itself during a longer period of time. When you stay close to yourself as a photographer, your personality will drive your decisions during photography. And because of that you will shoot in a certain way to create images that are appealing to you as a person. After shooting a lot of other subjects, I started shooting portraits a few years ago. And along the way I found a way which I prefer to create images. And I started acting to that way and shooting more and more in that direction. When I took a look at my portfolio after a few years I started to see the similarities in my work. And what was even more interesting: these similarities reflected me as a person.
These similarities in work are the photographers style. When I take a while and think about my photographic style, it can be recapitulated with the following keywords:
- Provocative (slightly)
Which is interesting because I am an introvert and calm person. And this reflects in simplicity, tranquility and modesty. I like to use minimalistic compositions so that the subject can get all the attention it deserves. I add up to this by using slightly desaturated colours and prevent extreme color explosions in my images. It all has to support the subject to me. An interesting this is the provocation part. Which you would say das not reflect my introverted personality. But somehow, how introvert and easy going I might be, somewhere from inside of me sometimes is an urge to kick something in the head a little bit. Just a tiny bit because I don’t want to feel people offended too much. So I will not be provocative about faith and these kind of this. And I stay away far from politics. I prefer working on the beauty of my images. The achievative part is something that I have always had. I always want to get better in what I do. So. Do you see that directly in my individual photographs? No. But you can see it in the retrospective of my work when time passes.
Does this mean that my style is now definitive forever? No. Of course not. A photography style will evolve with me along my journey in the future.
Does having a style means that everybody suddenly likes your pictures. Not at all. I can assume that other people don’t like my images that much. And that is perfectly fine. Other people do like them. It is all a matter of personal taste. And that is what makes us humans so interesting. We are all different.
I am interested to know how you all think about photography style. Let me know in the comments below.