“Gritty” Portraiture

“Gritty” Portraiture

Insight into Portraiture

My interests in photography lie predominantly in portraiture, but I’m rarely interested in creating “flattering” people portraits. I don’t use skin smoothing software, for instance, and very rarely will you see me spotting or cloning away the errant mole or pimple (unless it’s on the bride).

For me, people’s faces and bodies are topographies – landscapes where lines and bumps, pits and pores are as interesting as streams, rivers, mountains, forests and lakes for landscape photographers.

In a recent shoot of a fitness model, I wanted to change the tone of the shoot, albeit briefly, and focus on creating what I call “gritty” portraiture. The model, like most fitness models, was tall, fit and good looking. Which meant I had to change things somewhat to “grit” him up. On came a hoodie and directional lighting (best to make every pore and bump visible to the naked eye). Some black and white post-processing and selective sharpening later and Adam was transformed into a character who would not look amiss in the boxing ring.

 

Adam

Adam

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