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CLASS

TUTOR
FEE

$420

108

JOHANNES VAN KAN

PHOTOGRAPHY, LOOKING FOR THE PERSON IN MY PORTRAIT

Class Full, waiting list applies

Five days of mindful portraiture for people wanting to take/make/create portraits.


For over thirty years I have been photographing people. For over thirty years I have been looking at the faces of people who tell me they hate being photographed and have never felt particularly photogenic. I have broken more cameras personally than have been broken by people who suggest that me taking their photograph will somehow damage my camera.


This workshop is for people who know enough about their cameras to take an 'in focus', 'well exposed' image. It's for the person who wants to understand both the mechanics and principles of portrait making. It will include conversations, lessons and exercises. These will cover technique, lighting, and philosophy. It is about finding the 'real' in your portraits. But most importantly the objective is to add thoughtfulness to making portraits. I want to emphasise the skills of observation and communication. Too deep? There are too many photographs of people staring at cameras. This workshop aims to add depth and skill to your portraits.


Bring your camera. We will be shooting people.


Portrait notes - topics for discussion

Being the photographer

Being the subject

Camera knowledge

What is light

The decisions you make to create a portrait .... Intent

Making a portrait without intent.

Types of portrait:

-complex

-biographical

-political

-creative

-self

-simple

-fantasy

-familial

-active

-passive

-historical

-promotional

-intentional

-unintentional

-natural

-environmental

-classical

-found

-accidental

-honest

-dishonest

-other

What do you bring to a portrait?

Perspective

Disarming your subject

Being ready

Signs of stress

Boundaries set by the subject

On being photogenic


From wedding photographer to people photographer, my photography has always been about observation with a creative insight. It has mainly been about people or their influence (which is why I prefer photographing architecture over landscape) So really it’s always been about recognising what other people bring to my images. Whether it’s a happy bride, grumpy groom, a building's play on light, or its brutal presence in an environment, my subjects are influenced by the decisions of others. I am less likely to construct an image than I am to 'see' one that exists, and maybe colour it with my own sense of irony or beauty. This is not a list of achievements, but a description of seeing. I have awards and have had exhibitions. I have even photographed a book. These things might matter some, but what matters most is that my 35 years as a photographer has given me an understanding that is multilayered and more important than tricks of technology.’

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