This one thing will help you make your photos better
Are your photos technically flawless and aesthetically pleasing? It’s great if they are, but there’s one more thing to make them much better and raise them on a whole new level: storytelling. In this video, Daniel and Rachel from Mango Street will guide you through the steps you need to take to implement successful storytelling in your photography.
When you want to tell a story, there are basically two ways to do it. One is to capture moments around you as they happen. This is usually the way to go at all sorts of events, and this couple usually does it when they photograph weddings.
Another way is to tell a story of your own. Think of a concept and execute it in a photo, or a series of photos. This is precisely what this video talks about, and gives you useful guidelines how to turn your images into visual stories.
1. Find inspiration
Before you start working on telling a story, you need to find the story to tell, right? You can get inspired by anything, it all depends on your creativity, preferences and what moves you. If you don’t find it so easy to get inspired, spend some time alone, go for a walk away from all the electronic devices, and take a notebook with you. Here you can write down or sketch any idea that comes to mind.
Daniel and Rachel found inspiration in the mood and lyrics of the song “Honey Magnolia” by Brian Fallon. Music is a great source of inspiration, whether it’s the lyrics, the music or the mood that moves you. You can also find it in poetry, novels, movies, or even taste of food. Let your imagination go wild.
2. Find and direct the model
The couple works with one model, but she depicts both characters from the song. One is weak and sentimental, and the other is strong and heartless. When you find the model that can help you tell your story, work together. Don’t pose them, but direct them.
3. Choose the right location, outfit and props
When you’ve thought of the concept and found the right model, don’t forget that everything should fit in to make the story more striking. Choose the outfit carefully to convey the message. For example, Daniel and Rachel chose an oversized white shirt for a weak and emotional character, to symbolize the fragility and make her look small. On the other hand, for the cold and heartless character, they chose a bold outfit.
As for the location, it should also fit with the concept and make the whole mood of the photos more complete. Again, think of the story you want to tell and what ambience you think would be the best to help you tell it.
To conclude, it does take some time and devoting some of your energy to create photos that tell a story. But it’s a valuable investment: it will improve your photography, and also, getting inspired and preparing for the shots is one of the best ways to spend your time.
[This One Thing Will Make Your Photos Better | Mango Street]
Dunja Djudjic is a multi-talented artist based in Novi Sad, Serbia. With 15 years of experience as a photographer, she specializes in capturing the beauty of nature, travel, and fine art. In addition to her photography, Dunja also expresses her creativity through writing, embroidery, and jewelry making.