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Author Topic : style and Identity help needed!!! 
tornado1464

Thread Starter / Photographer
City: Guildford
Country: United Kingdom
Member Since: Aug 18, 2011
Posts: 188
Views : 2871  Sep 6, 2011 9:15am

Hi all
Be gentle with me , I am delving into the digital world and I am after some advice please?
I want to have an identity have a set style to produce photographs that look and feel new and rewarding.
I realise this is a very difficult answer to give someone but does anyone have any ideas where I can look for an identity and how you guys achieved yours.
Hope this makes sense, and hopefully you all wont say I am idiot as I don't have no direction in this already....
Jason

Life is a kalidoscope of conflicting conflictions.

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JGH

Photographer
City: Stoneleigh, nr Epsom
Country: United Kingdom
Member Since: Oct 26, 2010
Posts: 77

I've come to the conclusion that you can't just decide on a style because it risks becoming a constraint or looking unnatural. You are better off pursuing whatever it is that appeals to you in terms of subjects, settings, treatment, lighting angles, post-processing and so on. You may need to experiment for some time before you find your niche. Eventually a style may find you.


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the_abbot

Photographer
City: Gloucester
Country: United Kingdom
Member Since: May 19, 2010
Posts: 263

Personally speaking, don't limit yourself...try a bit of everything and see what works best for you; might be fashion, might be art nude, or somewhere inbetween, but until you experiment, you'll never know...

And don't be discouraged by those on here who will disparage your efforts.

“You see things; and you say, 'Why?' But I dream things that never were; and I say, 'Why not?'"

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tornado1464

Thread Starter / Photographer
City: Guildford
Country: United Kingdom
Member Since: Aug 18, 2011
Posts: 188

Good advice many thanks for not laughing at me

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MattMiller

Photographer
City: Southend on Sea
Country: United Kingdom
Member Since: Sep 18, 2004
Posts: 5747

Its probably best you just do your own thing, as Closet Desire says a style will come with time, when people know you and your work reaches some imagined quality threshold people will assign you a style, like it or not ... I have been accused of having a style on several occasions despite shooting every theme from fashion to porn, using every type of lighting from TVs to strobes, using the widest cross section of models from different fields and backgrounds I and always trying something new in potatoshop with every shoot ... despite all this I am repeatedly accused of having a style ... you don't even need to have a style at all people will just cherry pick a tiny sample of your work and decide you have a style ... when you get to this point you'll realise how much of a millstone it is because people will dismiss any other work you do regardless of the effort or quality in it because it doesn't fit their perception of your 'style' ... my best advice is avoid having a style as long as you possibly can




Matt Miller Photography


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Claire

Model
City: North Devon
Country: United Kingdom
Member Since: Dec 27, 2008
Posts: 6833

quoting post from MattMiller:

Its probably best you just do your own thing, as Closet Desire says a style will come with time, when people know you and your work reaches some imagined quality threshold people will assign you a style, like it or not ... I have been accused of having a style on several occasions despite shooting every theme from fashion to porn, using every type of lighting from TVs to strobes, using the widest cross section of models from different fields and backgrounds I and always trying something new in potatoshop with every shoot ... despite all this I am repeatedly accused of having a style ... you don't even need to have a style at all people will just cherry pick a tiny sample of your work and decide you have a style ... when you get to this point you'll realise how much of a millstone it is because people will dismiss any other work you do regardless of the effort or quality in it because it doesn't fit their perception of your 'style' ... my best advice is avoid having a style as long as you possibly can




Matt Miller Photography


But...you do 'funny' pics don't you?

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MattMiller

Photographer
City: Southend on Sea
Country: United Kingdom
Member Since: Sep 18, 2004
Posts: 5747

quoting post from Claire:

But...you do 'funny' pics don't you?

EDIT:

Actually they are only funny because youre in them ... pffft




Matt Miller Photography


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 Ace



Photographer
City: Reading
Country: United Kingdom
Member Since: Apr 12, 2006
Posts: 6203

You've been given some pretty sound advice so there is no need to repeat. I would suggest that you work on getting your photographic skills as good as you can and your style will probably start to evolve.

You may decide to explore B&W for a while for example and that might make you more aware of tone than you were before and that will show in future work.

Whatever you explore and experiment with goes into the melting pot which ends up to be you and your style. Least, that's what I'm hoping for!

I hope that makes some kind of sense.



Look to camera, smile and sparkle. That's ace, ace baby!

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Claire

Model
City: North Devon
Country: United Kingdom
Member Since: Dec 27, 2008
Posts: 6833

quoting post from MattMiller:

EDIT:

Actually they are only funny because youre in them ... pffft




Matt Miller Photography


hehe...I don't think there was any need for that edit was there funny man?

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tornado1464

Thread Starter / Photographer
City: Guildford
Country: United Kingdom
Member Since: Aug 18, 2011
Posts: 188

Matt,Closet,Ace, It all makes great sense! maybe I am looking to much to determine a style instead of trying things. I really appreciate everyone who has has some input into this thread, and hopefully things will flourish and I will have some ideas and inspiration to compete with some of the amazing pictures on this site. Cheers Jason

Life is a kalidoscope of conflicting conflictions.

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DavidL

Photographer
City: Postling, Hythe
Country: United Kingdom
Member Since: Dec 24, 2007
Posts: 1011

Practice, practice and more practice. If you do five shoots a week, at least, a style will gradually emerge.

It would not be difficult to study the work of osmeone you admire, and try to copy what they did, but this would not be your style. Better to pick an image you admire and try to interpret the same idea yourself. But really you need to seek originality.

I will watch your developing portfolio with interest.

DavidL

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tornado1464

Thread Starter / Photographer
City: Guildford
Country: United Kingdom
Member Since: Aug 18, 2011
Posts: 188

Crikes the pressure is on now David, but I can here what you are saying practice is definitely what I need . Many thanks for your time to answer me. Jason

Life is a kalidoscope of conflicting conflictions.

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JGH

Photographer
City: Stoneleigh, nr Epsom
Country: United Kingdom
Member Since: Oct 26, 2010
Posts: 77

Hi Jason

I've just finished reading "Portfolios" published by the Arena group of photographers. You might find it interesting to get hold of a copy - second-hand copies are available via Amazon at http://www.amazon.co.uk/Arena-Portfolios/dp/0955905907/.

Arena is a group of a couple of dozen extremely serious amateur photographers, all very well respected on the amateur circuit (by which I mean clubs, salons, etc). For each photographer there are around half-a-dozen paragraphs of text, followed by three pages of their photographs. This isn't a book on how to develop a photographic style, but it does describe the motivations and things that appeal to each of these photographers. This helps you to understand some of the factors that have contributed to their various styles.

The subject matter is varied though none of the portfolios consists of model photography. Nevertheless the comments made are worth reading and should give you some serious food for thought and points of departure for your experiments.

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