Of little things and women

Published December 4th, 2011

Last week I participated in a photo shoot of a young couple that wanted some intimate shots of themselves. The woman also happens to be an aspiring model and was looking to round out her portfolio.

As I walked around the ‘set’ I unconsciously found myself shunning full-scene shots of the couple and instead looked for interesting details -- like the placement of her feet as they kissed, facial expressions during supposedly off-camera moments, and the light bouncing off the handcuffs that were introduced part-way through the shoot.

Occasionally the five photographers who were participating would show each other what we had on our cameras and when I showed one image to Rick, the organizer and owner of the studio, he said ‘Oh yeah, details. Women always go for the details.’

True? He definitely piqued my interest, and I’ve been wondering about that ever since.

In my life I tend to see the whole and how elements all come together – whether it’s in personal relationships, projects at work, and how I spend my time.

That said, I am stimulated by details. I often recall the lines by Tom Cruise’s character in Vanilla Sky to his friend David: ‘It's the little things. The little things. There's nothing bigger, is there?’

When I scan over my portfolio of 600+ images on Flickr, while there are some sweeping landscapes and images of whole people, situations and scenes, I am compelled to agree with Rick and concede that more often than not my eye hones in on details.

But why choose one over the other? The whole may be greater that the sum of its parts. But the parts are incredibly lovely. Indeed, I find there is far greater mystery in the pieces and each detail becomes a whole that can stand alone, telling its own little story.

In your own portfolio, have you focused on details or on the whole? It’s a worth taking a look at our tendencies every so often – and that is true whether we’re talking about our portfolio, how we approach conversations, and pretty much anything else in life.

Below I offer a sampling of images of details I have loved on my walkabouts and in the studio. Click on the 'View more' link below the photo to view all of the photos in this blogpost.

My full portfolio can be viewed at http://www.fluidr.com/photos/denise-sarazin.


Details of a light falling on a simple farm fence with bokeh of leaves swaying in the breeze

  • November 6th, 2011
  • Nikon D700
  • 105mm / f/6.3 / 1/60 sec


From the couple photo shoot mentioned in the blogpost

  • November 26th, 2011
  • Nikon D700
  • 122mm / f/16 / 1/125 sec


My guitar resting on sheet music

  • April 8th, 2011
  • Nikon D700
  • 105mm / f/3.3 / 1/400 sec


Inside a magnolia bloom

  • April 30th, 2011
  • Nikon D700
  • 105mm / f/4 / 1/3200 sec


A woman with travel guide book resting on the bench in the La Alhambra forest in Granada, Spain

  • July 26th, 2011
  • Canon PowerShot G12
  • 13.7609988mm / f/5 / 1/60 sec


An ironic sign posted by residents in La Judería in Córdoba, Spain. It reads 'You're still looking for me',
took me on a guided tour. The streets are short, crooked and full of things to see and do.

  • July 25th, 2011
  • Canon PowerShot G12
  • 6.1mm / f/5 / 1/800 sec

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