Saturday, December 4, 2010



I shot this portrait last December, when I was out in Austin to visit my old friend Stephen. Dale was a drifter, who'd moved out to Austin in 1989 after the Loma Prieta, and had lived there ever since. Liked this portrait for a lot of reasons -- it had 'scene', and wasn't just Dale, but at the same time is completely about his character.

There are some other technical things I like about the shot. It's difficult to get bokeh out of a 28 f/2.8, and harder still to get bokeh that really works. Generally, it's not smooth enough to be painterly, while in the same time being just out of focus enough to be distracting. Here, the background scene is kind of a canvas, and Dale pops out of it. I shot two frames, but the one with his eyes closed was far better than eyes open, giving him a kind of hangdog look that I really liked.

I'll be going back to Austin right before this Christmas, and I look forward to the chance to shoot there again.

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