This is probably going to be quite a short blog entry, in word count at least, but there are pictures. Lots of pictures. I needed a distraction today and hey, this is my website blog so let’s talk about me and what I’ve been up to. What I’ve been up to is shooting someone other than myself, so you can sigh in relief because it won’t be my fugly mug that you have to look at. I spent the weekend in London to meet and shoot the wonderful Owen Gray as he passed through on his European travels. I didn’t think that I’d ever get the opportunity to photograph him because he lives across the pond, and it’s not like he needs photographs of himself. So it was a hugely pleasant surprise to get the chance to, and cue my usual pre-shoot anxieties and quiet excitement as I prepared for meeting him at the subway station on Saturday.
After four years of doing photography, I’ve never really lost those creeping worries and fears when photographing someone new, but they have more of a familiar comfort now than making me feel unsettled. I’ve embraced them because they never stop me from doing what I want to do, and if I’m a bit shy and quiet on a shoot, I’m still able to hopefully produce something that both of us will be happy with. Owen works with film photography himself and he was very patient and laidback and easy to work with, so my nerves were very quickly forgotten as we got on with making use of the warehouse conversion that I’d booked for our stay. The light was lovely and we didn’t even need to adjust much in the layout as the decor really added to the mood and setting.
I suppose what draws me into wanting to photograph someone really begins with the face. I love subtlety and people who can express themselves quietly with their eyes. Portraiture is what I feel my strength is, and over the last two years I’ve made a swift change in regards to who I work with in order to focus on bettering myself as a photographer. I find that I work best with people who are not only appealing to me on a visual level but who I also admire in some way. I don’t know if I can really explain what I mean properly when I say this, but I’m trying very hard to work with people who inspire me because hopefully then I can translate the depth I see in them through my photographs. After all, if I don’t find my subjects interesting, then I’m not going to make interesting photographs. Sometimes it’s frustrating feeling like I’m still so far away from what I’m aiming for in my work, but then again, I think if I didn’t feel I had something to aim for, I’d be a bit lost.
Thank you to Owen for giving up some of his time on of his very hectic travels to work with me. There are so many more photographs from this shoot which will be up here on my website and my various other internet dwellings like Instagram and Twitter. 🙂
You can also find Owen on Tumblr (warning NSFW images) : http://theaccretion.tumblr.com