Photography is a very personal journey and everyone tends to have their own style. I have always liked photographing eyes, because the eyes always tell a story. A story of happiness, or exhaustion or even worry. Some eyes are dark and others have an amazing ability to catch and reflect light. To me, there is something captivating and inviting about a close up photo of someone where you see their eyes. Because of this, I’m usually trying to get my subject to look at the camera. But as I continue to study it out, I’m realizing all that I’m missing out on by only photographing eyes. I’m missing some of the details.
An article I read suggested pushing the picture outside the frame of the camera and not showing the whole subject. I believe I’ve done this in the past, but I always make sure the head is in the picture. I’m working on turning that upside down. Sometimes it’s okay to not capture the eyes or the smile. (Although it took everything in me to not pull back and get the smile he was flashing across the yard at Bennett as he prepared to run the football at him!)
This picture shows the details of Hunter as he was playing one afternoon after school. The Puma shoes he wears that were passed down from a cousin. The graphic nike socks that he wears every single day since he got them in his stocking. His black watch that he got last year for Christmas and I’m still surprised he hasn’t lost it. And the football in his hand. I’m starting to wonder if I’d recognize him without him carrying a football. These details tell a story about Hunter, without showing all of him.
I think this way of photography works – obviously it might get old if you consistently don’t show any faces. But there is something about not having a face in the photo to automatically draw attention to. The details might always be there but they’re not always noticed when there’s a handsome face smiling back at you. It’s something to think about as you frame the shot.