The power of a portrait
I don’t really like taking photographs of people and avoid it if possible. You either have little control over a person or a very controlled situation can wind up with unnatural, even grotesque results.
On my travels to Australia, I was brave and photographed my partner Dermot and his two-year-old nephew Amos. They were spending time together, oblivious to the fact that I was somewhere nearby pointing a lens at them. I was pleased with this shot, very natural, a moment between them encapsulated. A print was framed and sent back to the family in Australia and was much appreciated.
Another rare portrait is of my Dad, which was taken in 2009. He died earlier this year, and I was so glad that I decided to take it. The photograph is not candid, but Dad’s pose is natural, relaxed and content, while his face is etched with wisdom. And it was taken in a familiar place and on an occasion that I remember. It has great poignancy and is very precious.
Capturing human faces still troubles me, but this branch of photography is immensely powerful. Should it be fully embraced or are buildings, bridges and sunsets the safer option? Is it possible to be scared of taking pictures of people?…