influences & inspiration

influences and inspiration

Triggered by the most recent post on the pin-up photo session, I thought that an on-going theme about influences and inspiration in photography would make a good topic.

The photo above was taken during an engagement photo session. In posing Melissa and Dennis for the one sequence, I wanted to use an idea that I saw on the cover of the disc of a movie I had watched just a few days before – An Education. (Amazon)

The young actress, Carey Mulligan was nominated for an Oscar for her role in this touching coming-of-age story. Beautifully told and acted and filmed. It was based on a book written by Nick Hornby. He was also the author of ‘High Fidelity’, a book dear to my heart.

The cover image of the DVD / Blu-Ray disc caught my attention – the two actors, elegantly posed. When I saw it, I immediately knew I would reference this image some time during upcoming photo session.

My earliest influences as a photographer were Henri-Cartier Bresson and Elliot Erwitt and … a slew of photographers whose work I noted while voraciously reading about photography.  As a wedding photographer, my influences are Jerry Ghionis and David A Williams.

Now while other photographers influence us, we obviously take so much from our the culture we are immersed in, visually informed by music, television, videos and movies and books.  When a movie by Quentin Tarantino influences even wedding photography, we have a good example of how Art is re-assembled and referenced and used by everyone.  In that spirit I will add more images, looking at how they came to be, influenced by something seen or experienced.

8 Comments, Add Your Own

  1. Eric Cullen says

    This is a film that I want to see. High Fidelity is a great book but sadly Hornby sold out when he set the film in the USA.

  2. Matt Heath says

    Great image and interesting to see where the inspiration came from! Something I feel is vital to me, to look at other work and take some inspiration from it!

  3. says

    I don’t enjoy watching films. But I have found that forcing myself to watch some “popular” ones has helped me several times with ideas that I can say to a group, “just imagine you are xxxx in the film xxxx” they “get” the idea and act into it well.

  4. emopunk says

    Hi Neil! First of all let me thank you for all the learning I have been having from you. Through the book and then via your website..
    You may like to have a look at the movie based upon your beloved book. It features John Cusack playing the main character. I didn’t read the book but the movie is definetively worth a look..

    Keep up the great work!! ;-)

  5. Neil vN says

    Eric and emopunk .. I did see the movie and loved it and considered it highly enough that is one of those movies that has to be on my shelf. That’s how I rate movies … 5 stars = has to be on my shelf. Just to have.

    High Firelity as a movie is great, but I loved the book more. I just identified so well with the main character who lives his life to a music soundtrack.

    Neil vN

  6. emopunk says

    Eheheh.. I really understand what you mean when you say you identified yourself with the character..
    Anyway Jack Black is really too much fun in the movie! ;-)

    P.S: off course the DVD is on my shelf as well!! I think I will look up for the book when I have time.. Cheers!

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