Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Faceless Portraits

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A portrait is defined as the "likeness" of a person and while they traditionally show the subject's face, you can really capture someone's true essence by focusing on any part of their body.  I took this photo on a trip to Argentina a few years ago and I recently found it in my archives.  I cropped the photo this way because I really felt like I could tell the story of this musician and the moment by capturing him in his element, playing to a crowd (that you can't see here) and totally lost in the song.  The richness of the colors, the way he hunched his body, how he squeezed his eyes tight and the way his fingers are clenched and about to dance across the instrument - it was more a portrait of his true self.

CopyrightMonicaLShulman-Arg2

This one is slightly different but just as telling except the story is about the guy in the back this time.  I purposely blurred the background instead of the foreground because at the time I really wanted to focus on the guy in the front.  I haven't really thought about these photos since because I took a lot of the same scene and then only selected one or two to edit.  Looking back at them now I see that actually all the men in the shot are important.

And check out this portraits tutorial too, if you'd like!  Plus, tips for photographing people in public.

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