Looking for advice

I would like some advice.

In this particular photo I wanted to invert the role of father and mother. Working with children I hear almost exclusively of the women in young peoples lives. Fathers are something like a weekend treat, or depending on the relationship, a Sunday school sermon when all you want to do is play. This couple was sitting outside one of the areas the dancers I mentioned previously pass. The mother in her almost defensive posture, broad hipped, scanning the crowd; the father coddling their child with rugged hands, thick forearms, and a gentle demeanor. They were very friendly and their sizes inverse from what you’ll imagine from this photo. But how to crop it?

okayama momotaro festival-450-2

I like the above; however, the broader photograph provides a context and puts the man in the center of four women, which articulates something to me. There’s no right or wrong, but I can’t decide which tells the story better and so I’d like to ask you for your opinions and advice.

okayama momotaro festival-450

16 Comments on “Looking for advice

  1. They are both beautiful photos, but I think the bottom one tells the story better. The top is lovely, but maybe a little bit grainy due to the cropping….lovely observations in both, though. Well done. D

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks.

      Actually, I added the grain to roughen the texture. I tried different ways with smooth skin but it never looked right to me.

      I appreciate the observation and suggestion. πŸ™‚


  2. I prefer the composition of the second one. In the first one, there is not enough space between the head of the mum and the border of the picture (for my liking :-)). But I must admit the first one is more intriguing, the mum appears so big, it’s weird, but it can catch the eye πŸ™‚ so.. maybe you can crop it again leaving more space between the head and the border ? πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’ll give it a shot and see how it looks. Thanks for the comment.

      It is freaky with a tweak in perspective and a funny angle can produce, isn’t it. In this case Big Momma. πŸ˜‰


  3. Steven, I hold two parent support groups weekly and right now I have two fantastic dads very intent on doing a great job with their children. I helped one dad a few years ago get permanent primary custody of his three kids from a mom with mental health issues. I also know many fathers raising their children as single parents for one reason or another. Fathers are the other parent regardless of what you believe or hear even though tradition points toward moms.

    As for the image above, I would leave it as it is but if I cropped it, it would be to remove the excess on either side and show only the three players, mom, dad and child in a tall, narrow image. Without cropping at all the family appears in the scene as it is, perhaps viewing a play or other activity.

    You are the artist, what will it be?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Fathers are definitely half the equation. And I haven’t said it enough, but bless you for the work you do, both in your career and on your blog.

      Artist? I’ll have to think about that. πŸ˜‰ I’m still very much learning what each step means as I work on these photos. It’s nice to hear a voice over my shoulder to help me put things in perspective. πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Why not (indirectly) invite a viewer to interpret the photo as they see, rather than modifying an image to depict what you (or any photographer for that matter) see? I’m obviously taking this in a different and possibly undesired direction. As a non-photographer, yet an aware being, I watch and hear others who see things in a multitude of ways. I ‘get’ what you’re trying to do as a photographer, yet I’m left feeling that you’re potentially depriving me of an opportunity to see and think in terms of the unaltered. Perhaps there is something of value to another’s eyes that you don’t see.

    A different perspective. πŸ™‚ I like your capture, Steven, due the manner in which I interpret what’s seen.

    Liked by 1 person

    • The photo is as of yet unfinished. I would place it in it’s own post as part of a narrative, like the previous post, or set it on it’s own.

      I think both images can communicate different things for the viewer but my intention in taking and editing the photograph is what I want to pull out and so I’m asking which of the two conveys that meaning more. I’ve shortened the focal length to enlarge the women in the frame which I think comes across differently in the two crops. All photos are cropped. By placing the camera over a scene you’re cropping out the story you want to tell. The photo editor helps modify that story before releasing it into the wild.

      Point taken about letting the viewer decide, but for this photo that’s the next step. πŸ˜‰


  5. That’s an interesting question! For me, to focus only on the family – the line of 3 heads would accentuate the mother’s ‘top seat’. Cut more on the left, more on the right (man’s legs to the right) plus the baby’s legs. Just by seeing the baby’s hand which is animated is enough. The way the father looks at her so lovingly is very obvious so baby’s legs can be removed, I think!

    Liked by 1 person

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