Lighting & Posing: The Artist's Language
"Lighting is the language we have to use as artists, and it will separate us from the masses when executed properly," Walden says. "It's like a magic formula. With proper lighting, we can set mood, slim subjects, draw specific emotions and flex our muscles as artists."
But Walden knows that you cannot grow your lighting skills without also growing your posing techniques--they are both critical image components.
When it comes to posing, Walden emphasizes the need to remember that as a photographer, you are in the business of flattery (another part of the artist's language, you might say). "Our goal is to flatter those in front of our camera and to capture images that reflect the way loved ones see that person...instead of the camera," he explains about how he selects poses for a shoot.
How Walden Uses the "Artist's Language"
In his own work, Walden takes a "capture, adjust and refine" approach to slowly build an image with perfect lighting, posing and emotion. To get it right, you also have to really know your clients. That will help you make the necessary adjustments.
"We apply lighting to each subject based on what best suits them and what type of lighting will carry our style and the message we want to capture in the image," he explains. "Daily, I appreciate the great importance of connecting with every subject. This allows you, as the artist, to draw out the needed pose and capture the image that carries a natural look for each subject."
If you want to learn more of Walden's tips for growing your lighting and posing skills, don't miss his Kodak-sponsored session at the 2011 PPA Tour stop in Cincinnati, OH (September 19). He promises that you'll walk away from his session with a greater understanding of lighting and how you can use it more effectively and artistically. He'll also share tips on poses that will help you capture the emotion of your subject.
So, if you're ready to grow your fluency with the "artist's language" and learn to use lighting and posing more effectively than ever, register for to see Tim Walden (and others) during the PPA Tour!
In addition to his competition excellence, Walden is a member of the Society of XXV, a qualified National Juror, an accomplished lecturer both in the US and internationally, and has earned his ASP Fellowship Degree. At Imaging USA in 2007, both Tim and his wife, Beverly, were awarded the coveted Gerhard Bakker Award for outstanding photographic education. He is also the Vice President of PPA's board of directors. Read more about Walden here.
The PPA Tour 2011: One to Grow On is an eight-city slate of daylong workshops, starting August 15 in Atlanta. Each event--designed for those just getting into photography or those needing a refresher--is focused on helping photographers make more money, while finding new ways to differentiate their studios in a highly competitive industry. Read more about the PPA Tour 2011 here, and see more of the cities and speakers here.