It’s been a while since I hung out with the Basha boys. The youngest remind me so much of my youngest boy, so photographing them is a lot of fun. Well, they seemed to have a good time too. So I’m going to call it a success all around because we got some greta photos. Here are my favorites from the day, along with a slideshow of the session.
I think their father was doing something behind me at this point and I think it had something to do with me… that’s ok. I will take any kind of abuse to get the shot.
This was an interesting choice. There’s a lot of green back there that is beautiful, but only when the vines are the majority of the frame. The composition I think is better when the building plays a greater role in the image, but the color of the building pulls you away from the family, so when they were in front of the vines, I kept the images in color, but when they are in front of the building, I turned the images to black and white with a sepia tone. I much prefer the sepia toned image to the color anyway, but I can see the merits in the color images as well, so long as the building is not too prevalent in the image.
I tell write this out so that people can get a glimpse into my thinking as I make decisions for the image. I suppose very few clients would have felt that something was wrong with the color version of the image, but I am certain that if shown the two side by side, the choice would be clear. That being said, I don’t show them side by side, because I fortunately get to make the decisions…
One of the most challenging things we do in a child portrait session is try to get a child to smile naturally. If you tell them to smile, they give you a forced smile, which then makes you wish they would just go back to sullen. So we go back and forth, smile, frown, smile, don’t smile, we tell jokes, parents act like monkeys, we tell them little lies about spaceships in our cameras, whatever we can do to distract them from thinking about forcing a smile. Then, once in a great while, they break out the natural smiles. The ones that say, “you’re funny daddy,” or that show the beginnings of bright eyed wonderment. All the spent frames can then be dumped on the cutting room floor in favor of the little gems of personality we capture by shear will patience and will power and distraction, of course.
He was pretty proud of himself, getting on that rock. It required smashing a lot of flowers!
This is my favorite shot of the older brother. This was late into the portrait session, so by this point, he had gotten used to me and was able to let go a little. The images always get more and more natural as the session goes on. Imagine what a photo session is like when you spend all day, or three days with the family. By the last day, the children don’t even know I am there.
I will be posting next, a family documentary portrait that lasted for 10 days in China. If you have been following the other portraits I shot there, those were two hour sessions, as was this session. But the family we were there to visit was the focus of my attention for ten days. I’ll look forward to sharing the images with you.
I love the fence in the background. When I found this, I was sold on it and had to bring them here for a few shots.
I love this image.
This is not my image, I must admit. It is one of the boys’ shots. They wanted to take photos so badly, so I let them. The camera is a bit too heavy for either of them, but I held the bulk of the weight and zone focused it and then let them frame and shoot the shot. Not bad. I don’t know which image was which boys, so we will just say this image was shot by the Basha Boys. Good job guys.
Thanks for hanging out with me.
Slideshow Music by Fisher, Courtesy of Triple Scoop Music.
Location: South Mountain, Phoenix, Arizona