It took me four months to prepare and publish this post. Because it is not particularly related to a season, I felt it could wait till I work on other, more "urgent" posts; and to be truthful, I wasn't sure how I wanted to process and present the photos. Even though I have tried portrait photography quite a few times since I first took up photography, it is still not my domain. However, I do enjoy it and hope to do more portraiture work in future.
It was the day before Halloween, and G and I were staying in Haworth overnight. (We both love this place and are waiting for the day we move to live here). On arrival we had breakfast at Villette cafe and then headed for the moor to have some photography fun. Well, that is what it was supposed to be, but I must admit, at times I wished I had never initiated the whole thing at all.
I wanted to photograph G because he is my much loved partner; because I believe that physically he makes a good model, and that as a photographer I owe it to him to take photos of him now and again. But when I first suggested this photo shoot, he point blank refused it: he was too old; he didn't look good on photographs; didn't like his photographs taken....all the usual you get from so many people when you want to take their picture. Then, very soon afterwards, he was going to go along after all; he couldn't deny me the pleasure...but he will have to wear what he chooses to wear. "Well, that is ok", I said, "as long as you also change into what I'd like you to wear, as well". After a lot of hard work I finally manage to persuade G to put on the clothes that I imagined would help create the mood and tone I wanted to achieve in the photos. Basically, I wanted him to look like a smart countryman, reminiscent of a past time, and I wanted to create images of mood and atmosphere influenced by the sort of landscape we were in.
As we got onto the moor, there was one more thing for me to tackle, and that was to coax G to take off his jewelry, as I didn't want him to wear any. I had secretly brought along a small jewelry pouch for him to put his earrings and chain in, but alas, he wasn't going to do that! Didn't I know he never ever took off the ank from around his neck?! Another tiresome quibble ensued before G finally dropped his earrings and chain with the ank in the pouch.
Furthermore, it was cold and windy (quite frankly, I personally was too busy to notice), so I was often being rushed. Anyway, G's patience is only short, and I didn't have very long at all to get the shots. Obviously, G is not a most compliant model, but because I know him well, I was able to take it in my stride. Right now, the most important thing is that we did manage to walk away with a handle of photos we both like.
G doesn't mind photos of his profile, so that is how we started.
I took a couple of pics of him walking from behind while he was trying to relax. All the photos were taken on Penistone Hill - the beautiful moorland park above Haworth.
Looking at the view of Lower Laithe Reservoir
There were some large stone slabs there, perfect to sit on and pose for a portrait with broody mood...
We both agree in this being our favourite image. I was really happy to come across this spot with tall, orange grass which must have turned that colour with autumn. It inspired me to add a cloud overlay in this and the next two images in Photoshop to create a different, warmer feel to the day.
Towards the end we came to what looked like a small pond. I liked the reflections on the opposite side. As G stood on the edge looking into the water, this dark and macabre image came to my mind, so I took a few quick shots of the scene before me. I actually processed this image first, and very soon after the shoot, as it was the only one I knew exactly what I wanted it to look like.
So, G and I have successfully done our first ever photo shoot. We are planning another one some time this summer. Now it would be really nice if we were treated to a book cover which would be based on our joint efforts. Well, maybe, ..... we'll see, ....you never know.....