Passionate photography: 8 January

Guest speaker Astrid McGechan from Surrey told members on 8 January via Zoom that real photography is about passion and involves pure emotion. Drawing on examples from her own exhibitions she spoke of how members of the public had been affected by her photos. “Emotional responses to an image come when people recognise something important to them,” said Astrid. “It may not be what you saw in the image so it is worth asking them to talk more about what they feel.”

In trying to produce images that have strong emotional content, Astrid explained that she tried to produce an image of what she felt when taking the shot rather than necessarily just what she saw. Techniques may include using multiple exposures, going for dramatic close-ups, intentional camera movement, deliberate de-focussing or cropping an image so that interesting shapes dominate. Sometimes an accident, like over-exposing a scene, can produce a startling effect which prompts new ways of seeing things.

Above all, always be ready with a camera, even if it is just a mobile phone camera. Images that arouse strong feelings can occur when least expected.

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