As I have been moving into the world of portraiture, I find that I set my standards high for clients. To quote Tom Petty's Here Comes My Girl: I "catch myself waiting, wondering, worrying about some silly little things." And those silly little mostly add up to something like, "How do I make sure that I do as good a job photographing this person as I do photographing my own family?" The answer for is to care just as much. That is why I will not take on too many portraits in a given year. I need the emotional space to try and capture the essence of my sitter. Last year, I photographed poet, editor of River Styx literary journal, and junk-folk musician (The CharFlies) Richard Newman for his latest book, "All the Wasted Beauty of the World." I made my edits and provided him with about 20 choices. He shared them with friends, family, and colleagues. The results were inconclusive. Four rose to the top, but it was still four. There was no definitive choice. Of those four, people liked each for different reasons. As the photographer, I was let down because I had not captured what everyone agreed was the "quintessential Richard." A friend and fellow photographer thinks I am too hard on myself. He says I should consider that perhaps Richard has many sides and each was revealed in a different shot. Perhaps my friend is right. But I won't stop trying for that single, definitive shot of each of my subjects. This being said, I cannot claim to have a single definitive shot of either of my sons. I have many favorites for many reasons.
Fuji Acros 100