I just get this awesome feedback by a LensCulture reviewer of my series “African Portraits” in the beginning.
“Lensculture is a photography network and online magazine about contemporary photography in art, media, politics, commerce and popular cultures worldwide: “a resource to keep up with the latest trends and debates in contemporary photography”. In addition to its online magazine and publishing network, LensCulture has hosted international photography portfolio reviews each year in Paris since 2010 in partnership with Paris Photo. LensCulture sponsors international photography awards and grants several times per year, as well as traveling exhibitions of award-winning photography.
Will Coldwell, writing in The Independent in 2013, described LensCulture as one of the ten best photography websites, calling it a “definitive resource for anyone who wants to keep up with the latest trends and debates in contemporary photography”. Critic Sean O’Hagan, writing in The Guardian in 2012, listed it among the eight best photography websites or online publications, calling it “one of the most authoritative and wide-ranging sites.”
Not too bad isn’t?
And here is the feedback!
“You are a photographer who notices the big moments, the poses and the small things, half hidden in the shadows. Good photographers know how to do both. And I say this as a compliment. These are lovely. Your statement mentions that these people are not visited often by outsiders. And they are probably not used to being photographed as their is a shyness to them which is very appealing in this time of overly aware selfies.
Little Big Ear is charming in this way. He smiles and we fall in love with his big ear and his missing teeth because he looks so lovable and welcoming. I feel the sincerity of the people and of how they have given you their trust. Your color sense is fantastic.
In the first image, in Pontseng, the yellow shirt leads the eye. It becomes like a traffic sign for the lower light in the shadows. Look at me now. And it works compositionally as well as aesthetically.
Mama is calm but the figure just behind her in the shadows looks like her protector. She is the dignified authority but she has a helper nearby. Using the lower aperture here and focusing on Mama’s face was a good idea.
I like the neutrality of the Carpet Shop image too. Your subject is blending into the background of his shop. Smart salesman!
I appreciate that you are not retouching the work but I was not sure if you made any changes to the last one of the girl in the hat. I think it is natural light and it’s so beautiful. She looks innocent and lovely but I was confused about where the light came from that was so bright around her head while darker elsewhere.
I would also like to read more from you. It seems like you are a spiritual person and the exchanges that you have with your photographic subjects are meaningful. Others would like to know more about that experience too. So write about what happens when you are there. How do you ask to take the photograph? What do they say in response? How do you direct them? All of these parts are important steps into making the photographs you want to make.
I would look at the Magnum Photographers who I believe do amazing work all over the world. You can search their website by country or look at some of the photographers individually. Also Agence Vu and National Geographic. See if you can find ideas or suggestions in this work for possibly building a series of work that maybe goes deep with a particular aspect of the culture.
This could be an idea like photographing all the shopkeepers?
Thanks for sending these and I hope that you continue your pure photography and travels for a long time.”
Beyond all nice words, the reviewer feedbacks are very important for an artist because they’re concrete advices and tips from people who have no interest in flattering your ego. They’re used to review portfolios, to see pictures and their opinions are neutral. I really thank LensCulture to offer this opportunity for every competitors to get such reviews. It really helps to improve the way to take pictures and show them!
Link to my page on Lensculture