As portrait photographers we can get really hooked on the “session” mentality. The 60 minutes (give or take) we have to capture the individual personalities and relationships. It is easy to forget about the depth and latitude of a series. Mariana Gonzalez’s series of her brother Pablo is a welcome slap upside the head reminding me how much can be achieved with a photographic series. I love the simplicity of these compositions which belie the complexity of showing the varying aspects of Pablo’s mood and personality. Here is what Mariana had to say about shooting these:
“This project started parallel to this one, because as I was working with this group of different people being portrayed in the same situation, light and cloth, I started thinking about doing the opposite: taking one person, and portraying him/her in different moments, clothing and light, but respecting some aesthetic codes (the framing, the clean background) to keep a visual constant within the differences, and hence the series was born as a counterpoint to the Untitled one.
I liked the idea right away because I sometimes feel one portrait isn’t enough to depict the complexity of a person and so I thought that making many portraits of one person through some of those different moments/attitudes/expressions that make that person that person in our eyes, could give me the necessary images to really depict a portrait of him/her, a portrait made of several images.
I then chose one of my brothers to work with, and we had several sessions throughout a semester, on different days and times of the day to capture different moods and looks. He would call me whenever he had the moment to drop by (even if it meant at 4 am after partying), and I would call whenever I had a new idea on a mood/attitude I thought of as typical of him and that I wanted to capture, so I must say the sessions were truly a collaboration between us.
On the technical side this was a fun challenge, because I chose to work with slides and I developed them myself, so it was a process of adjusting my developing technique to improve the results from session to session. And getting a positive right away was a lot of fun.”
Anyone else have a series they want to share? I would love to show more of these. Any sort of series involving people would be fantastic.
More fun tomorrow. We have something very special for you, so remember to visit. And check out our contest on our facebook page. Theme is kids and cameras… time to show off your creativity.