In the first week of our Visiting Curator series, madeinsheffield has selected Lou O' Bedlam to be the featured artist for week 29 of Spotlight Seven. Lou picked up his first camera, a Polaroid, after reading the Stephen King story Sun Dog. Lou, an EMT living in the Los Angeles, is a true Polaroid devotee. So much so that if given $10,000, Lou would spend the whole sum on Polaroid film. Here's just one of the question & answer exchanges.
3) Your subjects seem very relaxed with you. What's your method of working - how do you put them at ease? Do you give them much direction?
My "method", as it is, pretty much is hinged on conversation. I started doing more Photo Shoot type work mainly because I wanted to hang out with particular people I found interesting, and wanted to know more about. As a result, most of a standard shoot revolves around simply talking. Asking questions, sharing stories, discovering people. I think a lot of the "ease" seen in my photos is mostly because the actual photography is, hopefully, well-integrated with the hanging out and talking.
I tend to give very little direction, sometimes as little as "freeze right there, don't move." I'm trying to capture things I see in a particular expression, or pose, more than trying to place a model in a situation I've crafted.
Learn a lot more about Lou and his creative process in this week's Spotlight Seven interview. And check out all 10 of the amazing portraits selected for his exhibit. And be sure to check Lou O' Bedlam's website if you have a chance.