Tuesday, March 8, 2016

52 Week Challenge: Week 10

Well guys, if I had any doubt about making my portraiture my photography style of choice, those doubts were erased this week. The challenge was to take an environmental portrait; that is, an image of someone in his or her "natural environment." I originally was going to do a photo at the dog park, but after last week's dud of an image I decided to push myself a little more.

After a little bit of thought, I settled on the idea of a vintage/junk shop. I liked the idea of creating layers around my subject, and a nice, messy junk shop seemed like the perfect setting. The first few I stopped into this weekend were entirely too curated and tidy. I wanted chaos and age and the sense that a treasure was just waiting to be found.

The second I walked into Down Memory Lane, I knew I'd found it. It felt like walking into a grandparent's basement. Boxes of seashells or buttons were stacked on the floor, piles of jewelry and jars of marbles were tucked into shelves. Little piles of kibble were hidden away to satisfy the shop cat. I was in love. I waited until a few customers cleared out, then approached the women who had been helping them. She directed me to the older gentleman puttering around the store; her father, the owner.

I tried a few posed shots, which didn't work as well as I'd hoped, then eventually wound up just following him around the store as he continued to putter.


That was the image I shared as my official photo. It immediately became the most popular photo I've shared in the challenge to date, with more than 100 "likes" in the first 24 hours I posted it to the challenge's Facebook page. On Instagram, the challenge creator "liked' it and I literally dropped my phone in excitement.

It's just been such a relief to finally nail a shot; I haven't felt this good about a challenge image yet.

I had a few other favorites from this shoot, but I liked them all so much that I decided to share them on my photography blog. You can check them out here. (Sorry for the clickover. It sucks, I know. I promise not to make a habit of it.)

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