ImageZ Club Night – 100 Strangers – Guest Speaker
16/11/21 Attendees 25
Last night our guest speaker Steve Myall explained how he had joined a project set up on Flickr called 100 Strangers.
Steve said that he gave himself the project to see if he had the nerve to carry out the requirements of the project which meant approaching complete strangers and asking them if he could take their photographs. He had to reach one hundred. As you were only allowed to post three a week on the website, he wanted to see how long it would take to fulfil this task. He had to find out a little about them, their name and job for example.
Steve has lived in Nottingham and has been doing photography for forty years. Steve talked about the equipment he used Canon EOS5D Mark 1V Camera and 50ml Lens, the settings he used and added that he took a notebook and pen with him to aid his memory. He kept equipment to a minimum when approaching people, he did not wish to set up lots of equipment.
He began by going to events such as a SteamPunk event, a Caribbean Carnival and a Comic Event. He explained here people were used to and happy to be photographed and this helped Steve to build his confidence.
He went on to tell us about how to approach people, go immediately and don’t think about what you are doing, a smile, explanation of why you want the picture. Key signs he said that would tell us someone did not wish to be photographed were avoiding eye contact, someone in an obvious, mothers with children, safety is a must, and people in groups as the person you asked would be self -conscious and the friends would take the mickey.
Whilst showing us his remarkable pictures of the many characters he had met in Nottingham, he explained how he loved coloured hair and would be drawn to people with brightly coloured hair, at last finding his ultimate person who had Rainbow coloured hair.
He was extremely interested in finding appropriate backgrounds and would spend time looking for interesting doors or walls to either compliment or contrast with his subject.
Steve talked to us about his post processing techniques, which involved some infra -red use to enhance skin tones, converting to monochrome and brightening eyes a little, and use of pin lights and reflection.
Steve is a very engaging man, an interesting speaker with an obvious talent for putting people at ease by using a relaxed way of communicating. This was shown in his portraits that jumped off the page with their wonderful sparkling eyes and expressions. He had skilfully caught their characters with the camera.
Some of his portraits included, Frank and his owl, a glamourous Pole dancer, a tattooist with a skeletal hand, and a selection of social workers with brightly coloured hair and numerous earrings.
It was a great evening and inspired us to get out there and photograph our fellow humans, but Steve did advise us to stay in crowded places.
Next week: Competition – ImageZ Challenge Trophy Round 2
Tuesday November 23, 2021 from 20:15 to 22:15