"Hindsight is always twenty-twenty. " Billy Wilder
"Hindsight is an exact science. " Guy Bellamy

31 December 2011

See, Learn, Do

Hong Kong, Image © PeteM2020

I recently saw an exhibition by German fashion photographer Peter Lindbergh. The 30 odd images were all chosen by one of his close friends and spanned a few years of Peter’s career.

The prints were large, imposing and superbly printed, but I was puzzled by the choice of images. Almost disappointed. Why were those pictures chosen?

Next to the gallery was a small theatre showing a ½ hour documentary of Peter working with the models and discussing his vision with the art directors. The film was fast paced and the dialogue was in English, French and German. Despite taxing my linguistic skills beyond their limits, it was easy to see why he has become the favourite photographer for many of the world’s top models. The film had a profound impact on my thinking.

I went back and looked at the exhibition again – and now, understanding the context, the images suddenly became alive. An “aha” moment!

Am I capable of emulating his style – probably not? Did I learn something – absolutely!

Antwerp, Image © PeteM2020

04 December 2011


Little did I know the word "silhouette" derives from the name of Etienne De Silhouette a French finance minister who, in 1759, was forced by France's credit crisis during the Seven Year War to impose severe economic demands upon the French people, particularly the wealthy.

Because of de Silhouette's austere economies, his name became eponymous with anything done or made cheaply. Prior to the advent of photography, silhouette profiles cut from black card were the cheapest way of recording a person's appearance.
Hong Kong 2011.   Image  © PeteM2020
In photography silhouetting occurs when there is a lighting ration of 16:1 or greater. If the image is created by natural light, the technique is often referred to as  “countre-jour”. Caught this image in a shopping arcade one evening.