Pictures Tell Stories–Faces in Photos

Most newborns learn to focus first on their mother’s face. The human face is so important to us, we see faces even where there are none. My subconscious seems to bring them out of patterns in the carpet or the curtains or in light and shadow on a wall. It’s fun to use the camera to capture some fanciful images, and even more satisfying to capture the emotions on the human face.

A face by the trail…
Look! It’s a gnome!
A not-so-happy woodland creature
Faceless but happy in Arizona!

Disguised as a tree

Not a face, but a shadow-angel in the Grand Canyon
Real faces express wonder.
Or interest…

Or a lifetime of memories…
Or pride.

All it takes is being in the right place at the right time…every photographer’s greatest joy.

Your Photos Tell Stories, and the Story is in the Details

I’m an amateur photographer so I can’t offer professional picture-taking advice. But I’m grateful to live at a time when camera technology is so simple, easy, and fun that only a few short years ago, professionals could only dream of the miracles our cameras today perform. In sharing these photos, I’d like to offer a few tips that might make photography more fun for you as well. 
The best pictures tell stories, and details tell the story best. Here’s one technique that works especially well for travel pictures.
Take an over-all shot to establish place, mood, or occasion.
In this photo of San Xavier Mission Del Bac, near Tucson, Arizona, the people walking toward the gates seem to beckon us to follow. 

Follow the scene-setting shot with others that give more detail. Here is a closer shot of the interesting main entrance to the mission.

The weathered wood of the entry door caught my eye. How many worshipers have passed this way?

An overall shot of the complex interior of the sanctuary…
….followed by detailed vignettes inside the church.
This Station of the Cross relief in the courtyard gives a glimpse of the interior construction of the wall.
A series like this could be completed with any number of shots: perhaps an individual worshiper kneeling to light a candle, or the priest ministering to his flock, or a group of tourists listening intently to a guide.
My favorite shot shows the wrought iron gates opened out from the exit, indicating that the world awaits the ministry of those who’ve come to worship.

Try taking shots in series to draw your viewers in, whether you’re traveling or just looking for stories wherever you are.