Don’t forget, in just 15 days, the December Challenge will begin.
All you need to do is commit to shooting a portrait a day, each day of December, 2007. You don’t need a blog, just upload them to Zooomr (or Flickr if you must). Tag them with, “decemberchallenge” so that I can track them all easily.
During the month, I’ll write a couple of posts, tracking our progress. You should too, if you blog. With each post, I’ll also include some of my favorites from the Challenge.
Now, there are many of you out there who seem interested, but you’re concerned that the Challenge is too much for you. Don’t be discouraged! It’s really not that hard. I’m going to make a nice long list of everyone in my life who I can shoot. A friend from church, who flies for the US Navy, the comical lady who watches our kids on occaision, my pastor, a friend who is a local deputy sheriff, one of my wife’s pretty friends, all people who are great subjects. You only need 31 people. Everyone knows 31 people!
If you don’t know how to pose someone…try this. Have your subject stand or sit, however they feel comfortable. Now, use a lens that is somewhere between 30mm and 100mm. Set your camera to Aperture Priority and shoot at f/2.2 (or 1 stop above your lowest f-stop setting possible.)
Now have your subject close their eyes. Give them an emotion. Any emotion will work. For example, let’s say you say “giddy”. Tell them to think about the last time they were giddy. Interact with them, make them tell you about that situation. Keeping their eyes closed, have them talk about it until you see their face begin to “go back to that moment”. When you think they’re ready, have them open their eyes. Now! You’d better have focused and framed the shot. Right when they open their eyes, shoot away!
There are many methods that work well. This one is what I’m using, and will try to see how it works over time. Don’t be afraid to use emotions that lack a smile. Sadness, depressed, anger, melancholy, thoughtful, etc.
I hope you all decide to take the Challenge, and we’ll enjoy the ride!