The Bride and the Spoon Maker
As my Slovenian friend and I drove through the countryside, we saw this little shack with smoke rising from the chimney. We ventured in and found this older gentleman making spoons and stamping Slovenia on it for the tourists; he allowed us to photograph in his workspace.
The shack had two windows and a lot of available light; the inside of the shack was beautifully chaotic. If you can harness the chaos by making sure the subject is not lost in it, then the chaos becomes complexity, which gives the viewer something interesting to look at. I love photographing in different locales and this was a wonderful juxtaposition of a bride and “stuff”. There were mechanical objects as well as other things happening in the shack, not the normal place where a bride would want to go, making this unique and fun. We asked the shop owner to continue working as we photographed our bride in his building. We played around, incorporating another story, which was the gentleman, into the overall composition. I would experiment with different exposures and angles, but only pick the very best to display; in this instance, the best one included the spoon maker. By incorporating him and his equipment, it gave this photograph a very interesting story. Photographers love this image because of the story and relationship between the bride and the old man. The viewer has to conjure up his/her own story; why is the bride in this workshop?
One of the successful parts of this photograph was that the direction of his head and his arm was used as a line to point to her, and her arm, up high, makes a flow in the image and all the lines tend to work together from one person to the next. This was lit just by natural sunlight coming in from two windows. The best lighting on him was coming from the window on camera left and the lighting on the bride was coming from the window where she is standing.
Don’t be shy; you never know if someone will allow you to work on their property or be willing to be included in the photographs. If you do not ask, you will never know.