Personal Proposal 1: Fifth shoot – Thomas

 Wednesday 27th November 2013

Thomas is a dear friend of mine, and he is full of life. He is the guy who is friends with everyone and his open, happy, flamboyant, kind, generous, thoughtful, funny, lively personality is what makes people warm to him instantly. He is unique because he’s one of a kind. Some people may not feel comfortable in the presence of someone like Tom who is comfortable with himself. But I just think it’s great!!

When asking Tom what possessions he would like to involve (because there isn’t a specific collection that Thomas has, as my previous shoots did) he included some personal items that, as he got them out from the top of his wardrobe, he was describing how each item meant a lot to him – for example the toy dog was a special Christmas gift from when he was younger, the camera – because he loves photography and he and I actually partook in a photography course together at Bradford College, the photo frame – containing many memories with people he cherishes, his colourful array of converse shoes – as he is a colourful character! and his new laptop – as he embarks on a journey in Marketing at Uni.

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After photographing the possessions on their own I wanted to photograph Thomas with/in the midst of them – putting them into context with their owner. We then discovered more possessions we could photograph, his tattoo, his Marketing textbook and one of his pet bearded dragons. It was a very fun as well as structured time – because Tom has photographed many times before and understands it from both sides of the camera!

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I used flash again for Tom’s shoot because I felt it really added to the shoot – and in the past shoot (Dominic) I used it in such a way that it looked really natural (except on a few of the images where I wanted to see what a ‘spotlight’ effect looked like). The shoot was in the afternoon/evening so this limited the light we had too.

I definitely think knowing the subjects I have shot has been a great advantage to me – for example with Tom, we get each other. We see things very similar and we bounce off each other and inspire one another. Whenever we shoot together it is productive. For example – my original idea was to go out and shoot people on the street and capture their ‘eccentricities’. However I look back now and I am glad I didn’t go and do that – because to be honest, it would have been much more difficult! I would have gotten very different results – an outsiders perspective of a vague term of ‘eccentricity’. However when I know the subject, I know how to capture them and it adds character to the image.

I do however want to learn, more and more, how to shoot people I’m not as familiar with yet develop an ability of tuning in with them as a person, and what they’re about. My friends have told me that I have an ability to do this which is quite profound but like I say, they’re people I know and am familiar with.

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