2021 WEEK 1: Faceless Portrait

The first theme of the new year is about creating a portrait in a creative way. We are going to capture a situation, a mood or an aspect of a person’s character without revealing too much. When our subject is not recognisable we probably won’t have too much trouble asking for permission to publish the photo. Of course we can also experiment with a tripod, timer and self portraits. We can create silhouettes or play with depth of field or intentional blur. Props like masks or record covers may be held in front of the face. It can be a head shot, a part of the person or the whole body from far away as in a street photo. The final result should be an image of a person without showing the face or more importantly without showing the eyes.

Childhood memories by Ulrike Lukasczyk

We will wilfully break the rules of creating a portrait!

Wikipedia defines a portrait as:

„A painting, photograph, sculpture or other artistic representation of a person, in which the face and its expression is predominant. The intent is to display the likeness, personality, and even the mood of the person. For this reason, in photography a portrait is generally not a snapshot but a composed image of a person in a still position. A portrait often shows a person looking directly at the painter or photographer, in order to most successfully engage the subject with the viewer.“

While we will follow the rules of portraiture by composing carefully and thinking about what aspect of a person to capture. We will not show a person’s face nor have the subject look directly into the camera.

Links and Inspiration

A French street photographer – Valerie Jardin – is one of my favourite sources of ideas and education. She has written several books and articles and also records an interesting podcast series. This short article is published via the digital photography school – another favourite website of mine.

Or you can check out this mood board on Pinterest:

On Instagram there is a fascinating account with lovely and romantic children’s photos completely faceless:

Challenge summary:

  • Select your subject and mood/story/personality aspect you want to capture.
  • Carefully think about perspective, exposure and general composition and experiment with these parameters while you are taking your photo.
  • SOOC (straight out of camera) or edited post your photo during the week of Sunday, January 3 and Saturday, January 9.
  • Please remember to comment on at least FIVE photo submissions this week by answering the question “why?” in your comments. In other words, “why do I like (or not like) this photo?” or “why did this photo catch my eye?” Thank you!

The friendly community guidelines are pretty simple:

  • Take a new photo for the current weekly theme, not something from your back catalog or someone else’s image.
  • Post your photo each week to our active communities on Facebook or Flickr (or both). Tag the photo:  #2021photochallenge #photochallenge #tempusaura
  • Don’t leave home without your camera. Participating in the 2021 Trevor Carpenter Photo Challenge is fun and easy.

About Ulrike Lukasczyk

While photography always fascinated me I seriously started learning techniques and composition only back in 2016. One of my first sources of learning material and feedback was this group: The Trevor Carpenter PhotoChallenge. Being insatiably curious I dived into all kinds of subjects and techniques until I finally dared to photograph people. That really is what excites me most about photography: capturing real people at the right moment, their personalities, their stories and even their dreams. This is contrasting quite nicely with my day-to-day business. I’ve got an engineering degree in biotechnology and work full time as a scientist in research. At least my husband and two kids also like my photography hobby and encourage me to pursue it, modeling for me or discussing my ideas. We live in a village near Darmstadt in Germany. We like traveling with our Unimog camper (www.derullimog.de) and I also enjoy horseback riding and Yoga. Now I’m very happy and excited to join the admin team of this group and give something back to the community: challenge ideas, encouragement and photography tips. My photos can be found via the search function in the Trevor Carpenter PhotoChallenge group on Facebook, on Instagram at www.instagram.com/mindseyes_ul/ or my portfolio site: https://ulliluke.myportfolio.com.