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Project Portrait: Day 97

Day 95 of Project Portrait. Next up we have the awesome Jonathan Petrides – a very old friend of mine and a serial entrepreneur who has worked all over the world. We used to spend our summers as poor teenagers trying to become table tennis masters – as you might have guessed, that hasn’t worked out. With this photo I had a concept I wanted to shoot that was dark and broody. But within spending five minutes with Jon, I realised that’s just not who he is and that just isn’t the person I see when we hang out. It was a pretty awesome lesson. I’ve been trying to learn new styles and ways of lighting people to become more technically proficient. But I’ve also learned that for me, it is far more important to depict someone in a way that feels relevant to them rather than trying to force a concept upon them. So what does this shot say about Jon? Well, he’s one of the friendliest people you’ll meet, has always tried to good things for good people professionally and is just an all-round great person to hang out with, even if it was just for an hour. So hopefully that comes across in this image.

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Project Portrait: Day 96

Day 96  of Project Portrait. It’s been a fair old wait – sorry about that – life has just been getting in the way and it’s becoming a bit tougher to organise my time to match someone else’s. But, saying that here is my shot of Jim Butler. Jim is a freelance journalist whom I first met while working on the development of ShortList.com way back when in 2010. Like any freelancer will tell you it can be a fairly precarious existence when it comes to who you work for, for how long and whether you can pay your bills, raise a family and go out from time to time. Jim moved out of London a while ago due to cost and has found a lovely home in Hastings. But, he still works in London so it’s a fair old slog each and everyday. As a result I wanted to capture Jim in a way that reflects that. For many, freelancing seems like a dream – you’re your own boss, you can pick and choose who you work for and you can avoid (most of the time) the politics of the workplace. But the reality is much tougher – so this photo tries to depict Jim in a steely, more gritty light. There’s almost something heroic about this shot. Hope you approve Jim!

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Project Portrait: Day 95

Day 95 of Project Portrait – and it’s from my first actual commissioned shoot! These three portraits are of employees at a film and TV production company based in London. This was the first time I needed to create a consistent look and feel to each of the portraits – as well as making sure their heads are all roughly at the same point so it doesn’t look weird on the company’s website. I loved the blackboard they had in the offices as it gave this lovely swirling texture and I added this cool blue feel without managing to drain the colour too much (new photoshop skills ;)) Very pleased with the result and the company is too! So if anyone is looking for some new corporate headshots, come at me!

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Project Portrait: Day 94

Day 93 of Project Portrait. Next up we have the lovely Katie Paterson. Katie was looking for a headshot she can use on LinkedIn and elsewhere. She showed me the one her former employers used and it was well… not great. Katie was convinced she was the most un-photogenic person ever and that she absolutely hates having her photo taken. So I took this shoot as a bit of a challenge to a) convince her that it was possible to take a good picture of her and b) that it wouldn’t be as painful as she had previously thought. I also wanted to try and add a bit more to the standard headshot by using a lovely pink light and applying it to the left-hand side of her face to compliment her skin tone. Despite her protests – and the complete inability to keep a straight face wink emoticon – I managed to grab this shot. I was super pleased with the result and I hope I’ve managed to convince someone else that there’s no such thing as an un-photogenic person – just bad photographers.