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Paula Gardener

Provocative, intriguing, challenging and compelling are some of the words that come to mind when I think of  portrait photography.  The concept of capturing a moment in time, preserving the subject forever, is the best invention since the light bulb. As a child I loved staring endlessly at fashion catalogs and magazines. Fantasizing about who the individuals were, their lifestyle, their story. I would create a whole new world through the photographs I saw.

That is where the love of portraiture took a hold of me.

Over a number of years I have stumbled across numerous photographers that have inspired me. Through their work I have gained confidence to step out of the box and create a style of my own.

One of those many photographers is the late Irving Penn, his work has become one of the biggest influences in my portrait portfolio. I came across his photography through a Flickr page dedicated to him, obviously another fan like me. As soon as I saw his work it captivated my heart. He has a way of drawing the viewer into a personal space once hidden but now revealed through his eyes. I love the simplicity and dynamics of his studio work, the poise of his subjects. Such subtle drama but not too much that it takes away from the beauty of the image. Each individual portrait replicates the persona of the subject so well you feel you know them personally.

He inspired me to want to capture the hearts of the viewer, draw you in. Revealing just enough to make you imagine the story behind the lens. With this said I wanted to pay tribute to Mr Penn, knowing I could never replicate his beautiful portraits. I figured I would create my own representation of few. So armed with my iPhone 5 and the natural light shining through my bedroom window, I began quest. The limitations of a mobile device, that is not dedicated to photography makes this challenge even harder. However I know that with the countless photography applications available I would hopefully come close.

So without further ado I present to you firstly the beautiful works of Irving Penn’s Miles Davis portraits. Followed by a few of my portraits.

Oh and if you haven’t heard of Mr Penn, please look him up his work is amazing!

 Miles Davis by Irving Penn

 Paula Gardener

 Miles Davis by Irving Penn

 Paula Gardener

Miles Davis by Irving Penn

 Miles Davis by Irving Penn

Paula Gardener


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