What is your style
What is this? This phrase doesn’t quite evoke… much at first. Are we talking about people? Are we talking about between people? What does this mean?
The phrase came to me a few years back – I, like many other photographers get that question about “style” all the time – “Hey, what’s your style?!?” The answer to that always felt ambiguous to me – I’m not Dennis Reggie so Photojournalistic isn’t my thing. I’m not one of those rock-star photographers like Yervant or Anne Geddes – I’m “me.”
So I started thinking about what does that mean – exactly – “I’m me.” I will not claim to be a “people person” but I do believe and am fascinated by humanity. Ultimately I’m optimistic about humanity and believe we have so much potential it’s kind of ridiculous. Ridiculous! I’m not pessimistic by nature and I find too much of that gets me thinking about what chores I’ve got that I’ve missed doing, so I tread carefully into politics and news media. I’m willfully naïve in a way – choosing to believe in the goodness of those around me – after all it’s only a small percentage of idiots who cause problems (like opening the outside door of an airplane mid-flight) and I think 39% of those folks aren’t intentionally trying to be jackasses (yes I said jackasses – one my favorite words).
I believe that people have a lot inside them – a lot to share. My education (I have a Master of Science in Social Psychology) lets me understand the structures of those things, examine patterns and apply theory – but it is the sum of my experiences as someone who: loves the outdoors, is awed by the beauty of nature, believes that humans do amazing things, loves a good movie (sometimes even a bad one), enjoys a good glass of wine, loves skiing, thinks my children are borderline insane and I LOVE that about them, loves music, loves seeing people just trying (the finish-line of a marathon is an amazing place to me – or the steepest hill in a community bike ride), loves the smell of food and believes that we’re all doing the best we can most of the time – the sum of those experiences lead me to curiosity and hope and wonder about people.
My photography is my way of exploring that THING in the world around me. I like to ask questions and learn things about people. Open-ended questions like, “If you could have dinner with one famous person who would it be and what would you talk about?” Exploring the world, asking those types of questions with a camera in my hand is one of my most-favorite things IN the world. In those experiences I get to see people think and feel and remember and wish and hope and dream – and I get to capture that moment. It becomes a thing of beauty.
Interpersonal photography is – my “style” and the sum of me also: Interpersonal – between you and me (and my camera).
Those things – those descriptions that all the wedding magazine say couples should ask – “what is your style?” If I take my experience as the “vision” for how I work with someone – those other descriptors (photojournalistic, classic, traditional, modern) become tactics that I use to get the images that really define my style as a photographer.
What does all this mean? It means that as your photographer, I’m going to use all of my loves in the world, the experiences (both formal and informal) and those techniques to create and capture the images that tell your story. After all; isn’t that why you hire a photographer for your wedding anyway? So they use their “eye” to reflect your wedding back to you?
If you think that is something you’d be interested in – if you want your wedding photography to be a collection of notes and stories and tales of your lives together as they continue on – give me a call. Let’s talk.
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