Behind a picture (3): The Farm

Most of the time, there is no great technical skill or breathtaking scenery. In some cases the value of the image is simply in the story, and having gained the trust of the owner of the story /

Warrens Mill, Pennsylvania, July, 2017 /

A farm and two portraits. The first one is John, the labourer and guardian of everything out there. The first thing I did was to take a picture without him. I made the lighting adjustments, I composed and took a picture, then I looked at it in the camera screen to figure out where I could locate our model. Then I approached John and showed him the photo. «What do you think?» I asked him. John, despite being a rough guy, looked at it with curiosity and detail. He said he liked black and white. «It’s true, it’s nice,» I said, and added, «But it would be nicer if someone stood in the picture, would you like to pose for me?» John, proud of the offer, accepted.

The image worked because of the position of the person, his posture and the way he looks at the camera, which forces the viewer to begin to look around the photo starting on the left, continuing through the shadow on the floor and then to the huge farm in the background. The pick-ups (one at the front and one behind), the house in the back, the wooden fence, the cables and the clouds are nice additions to the composition of the photograph. Too many elements? Maybe.

La granja 1

The second picture was taken in the same farm and the protagonists are the tenants of the house behind John. Very humble and very good people. The deep America, far from freeways and fast food chains. We had set up the tent in their yard and they were always ready to help us. When we said goodbye, obviously I asked for a photograph. I placed them in the center and decided to include in the image that line of white squares above them, which gives the photograph a different frame. The texture of the wood, the door and the characters are the finishing touches.

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