The Art of Still Life Photography
with Paulette Tavormina
April 3 - April 8, 2016
Still lifes have intrigued artists since the beginning of recorded time. From ancient Egypt, where they adorned the walls of tombs, to the Renaissance, which introduced the genre into the cultural mainstream, the still life has been continually explored and refined, a process that continues today. For photographers, the still life presents unique challenges, as technical lighting skills merge with composition and design to bring an image to exquisite life.
Accomplished fine art and commercial photographer Paulette Tavormina begins this five-day workshop by reviewing the history of the still life, providing context and inspiration for our creative endeavors; a visit to a local photography gallery enhances this contextual process. Next she discusses and demonstrates techniques for building a still-life photograph, from conception and propping to composition and lighting, through to the final image. We explore sources of inspiration, finding objects, selecting surfaces, and building sets, while paying close attention to prop positioning, and color theory. A keen focus is placed on lighting to ensure that we heighten the desired emotional impact of our imagery.
Every morning Paulette leads critiques, followed by assignments that take the group rummaging throughout Santa Fe for subject matter. Fruits, vegetables, and flowers are sure-fire options, but we also seek out more exotic alternatives. Each day builds on the previous as we achieve a higher level of craft—and a deeper understanding of our own personal aesthetic and style.