Shooting Portraits Of A Friend

I am not sure if I make any sense in saying that it is more difficult for me to shoot photographs of people that I personally know in real life, versus strangers. Shooting random strangers on the street has always been a touch and go affair. I found someone fascinating, either with interesting facial features (facial hair, nice smile, soulful eyes, etc) or unusual character (choice of clothing, doing something cool) and I would approach them and triggered the shutter button merrily, without much thought. We may exchange short conversations and the encounter ended just there. However, when it comes to shooting friends, family or anyone that I know, I think I have the fear of "what if they do not like how they look on my photographs?".

Nevertheless, that did not stop me from taking the risk, and still point the lens on my friends anyway, with only willing participants of course.

Recently my dear friend Georgette Tan visited KL after her work trip to Berlin, and I attended her poetry recital at June Readings @ Seksan event. She looked super stunning in a white floral printed dress and I just had to take portraits of her. I brought her out to the yard and positioned her against short trees and shrubs in the background. The natural ambient side light from an overcast day did wonders in creating a flattering look on Georgette!

All images were taken with Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark II and M.Zuiko lenses 12-40mm F2.8 PRO or 45mm F1.8

Since it was a group performance, I took the group photograph of every performer at the event.

I personally prefer to work with natural light, especially on impromptu, unplanned, unstaged shoots like this case. It would be too intimidating to come into an event with a gigantic Octabox or Umbrella setup with wireless flash without consent and prior acknowledgement from all parties. Working my way into the crowd without being intrusive and being as courteous as possible is important. After all, minimal setup results in quick and efficient shoot. As long as there is plenty of beautiful sun light, why not take advantage of that?

I also took the liberty of documenting my friend Georgette during her performance.

Special thanks to Georgette Tan for being such a sport!

From now on, instead of just shooting strangers on the streets, I should start pointing my lens toward my friends!

1 comment:

  1. Good of you to focus on the people you know - when it is my family, as the younger person in the relationships, even though we are all old now, it's difficult to to use formally learnt ideas. But everything you do is worthwhile. Chelsea Northrup was talking about #photosForMe