A Face of Honor

January 07, 2014  •  Leave a Comment

For the past few years I have had wanted to do a black and white photo study of interesting faces. I've put it off because even though I could see what I wanted to do in my head, I didn't feel like I had achieved the technical and artistic level to put together a project that I would be proud to display to the world. Over the past year though, I have tried to improve my skills by learning to use light and shadows to create contrasts and definition that we see every day with our eyes but doesn't always get transferred to photographs. (If that last sentence makes no sense call me and I will try to explain what I mean.) Through trial and error, watching lots of tutorials, book reading , and hours in the studio with my good friend, Mark Hicks, I feel like I am at a point where I can put my idea in motion and create the world's next great photo study! Or at least put together a set of photos that people will enjoy looking at and share on Facebook...

I am a people watcher and I love to look at peoples faces. Not just beautiful faces either. I love the scowling faces of self appointed tough guys (in a very platonic way of course), the wrinkled and lined faces of our aged, the scarred faces of those who have experienced a physical setback that hasn't dampened their spirit, the noble faces of the proud, and the mild faces of the meek. White, black, and brown. Male, female, and other. Young and old. Classically beautiful and beautiful in a way only a mother could love. In a nutshell, faces with character. Think "true grit".

Where will the photos be taken? Originally, I had planned to take them all in my studio using the same background, lighting, and camera settings for each photo. I've reconsidered that though as I feel like the logistics of doing that would be all but impossible to pull off. What if I see an interesting face in Osawatomie, KS? Am I supposed to pass it by simply because my lights and reflectors are sitting in my studio in Danville, KY? Nope. I've decided to shoot the photos wherever and whenever the opportunity presents itself, including the studio. The world is my stage!

Are you a candidate for the project? You might be. I already have about a dozen people on my short list and they will be hearing from me. I'll have my eyes open for candidates and I'd like to ask you to nominate interesting faces as well. I'm mainly looking for adult faces at this point but I won't rule out a child's face if it "speaks to me". (I'm paraphrasing something my wife said the other day. We were in a store and she commented that something "just wasn't speaking to me" [her]. I vowed to use it someday so there it is.)

Participants will be required to sign a release and will receive a 5x7 print for helping me out. I'm excited to get started and I hope that you will enjoy the results. Stay tuned for details and updates!

Oh, the working title for the project is "A Face of Honor". That is subject to change though.
 


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