When I started ‘Charmed by the Light’ project, I saw it as series of romantic portraits picturing lovely girls looking at candles, launching sky lanterns and sitting near a fireplace, in other words the project showing people looking straight at the light in the darkness. But during the 3rd college semester I finally understood which photography genre I want to work in. So after I realised it’s documentary portraiture, my idea concerning the project developed into a narrative story about my partner. I suppose this idea is partially a result of project test shoot when I asked him to pose for me with the light bulbs. Surprisingly, when I looked at the images below, I suddenly remembered myself a year ago kidding that for the next project I’m going to shoot my partner while playing video games and name it ‘The Man of My Dreams’.
So I came up with the idea that people do spend a lot of time looking at light sources – when playing video games, watching TV, surfing the Web etc. Not as cute as images of beautiful girls with candles, but much more realistic and appropriate for my genre. Eventually, I decided to depict a story about my partner after his evening shifts. And here are some examples:
He often plays video games after work, so once when he turned on console, I asked him to take a seat closer to the screen so that I could take a shot and include a piece of screen in it.
I must admit it wasn’t as easy as I imagined because the screen brightness was constantly changing, much faster than I could correct the exposure.
I took several close-ups because he’s the main subject and his focused look tells me more than the whole scene. That made me prefer these images, but at first I wasn’t sure that the presence of the controller in the frame makes it clear that the light source is the screen. Later I decided that in this case observing the subject provides more content than observing the object.
Next I’m going to reshoot the scene because I want to focus on my subject. I also want to photograph him in natural state instead of asking to move close to the screen. I think it’ll help me to catch more real emotions on my partner’s face.