Authentic portrait photography is all about the connection between the subject (person being photographed) and the photographer. The lighting, camera settings and lens choice are just the final details in a process that involves developing a relationship (usually within a short period of time) to ultimately reveal the true character of a person.
The story behind one of the most famous and iconic portrait photographs of Winston Churchill is a great example. In 1941, photographer Yousef Karsh had the arduous task of capturing Churchill’s portrait in a timeframe of just two minutes with the former leader certainly being in no mood for the occasion.
In his book Karsh claims: “Churchill’s cigar was ever present. I held out an ashtray, but he would not dispose of it. I went back to my camera and made sure that everything was all right technically. I waited; he continued to chomp vigorously at his cigar. I waited. Then I stepped toward him and, without premeditation, but ever so respectfully, I said, ‘Forgive me, sir,’ and plucked the cigar out of his mouth. By the time I got back to my camera, he looked so belligerent he could have devoured me. It was at that instant that I took the photograph.”
It was a vary daring approach to take, but by engaging with his subject in this manner Karsh provoked a reaction in Churchill that he hadn’t intended to give. Nonetheless this process captured a more authentic side of a leader amidst the trying times of World War 2.
Portrait photography is our passion here at Carma Creative. Whether solo, couples or family portraits, corporate headshots, lifestyle or fashion based portraits we enjoy the personal process and helping to reveal the true character of our clients. Email or call us on 01392 920372 or 07730 511090 to find out more.