Lesson: Learning how to create powerful imagery | with Justine Curran


It’s so hard to choose one topic to share with you all, as I have a love for so many compelling images with different factors. So, I guess I will share the fact that you can use different techniques and styles to create an image. However, it will never have any impact on your viewer unless it moves them. Learning what produces a powerful image is understanding what evokes a story in someone else. Like a song a composer/artist writes may be a love song about someone in their past, when you listen to it, you feel as if it could have been written about someone you knew, and instantly you connect with it.


1 | Preparation: Even though my work has a documentary approach, I actually spend a lot of time getting to know my clients and preparing for our shoot together. I love learning about who they are and what is important to them. This allows me to really understand how I can capture them in a way that is true and sentimental for them. I don’t wing it, even though the moments are candid and undirected, the location and scene are thoughtfully planned out.


2 | Build relationships with your subjects: Do not be afraid to shoot moments up close and connect with your subject on a personal level. Be involved in the moment and shoot away. Use ice breakers and shoot what you want. When subjects portray a connection with one another - they tell a story. Capturing a moment, whether it’s a smile, a gesture or a crowd, can be impactful by highlighting an idea or characteristic that most of us would not stop and think about or consider important.


3 | Fundamentals Understanding the fundamentals of art such as color theory, composition and balance all assist in building a compelling image. Above all else, you must map out what you are trying to communicate through your imagery. 

xoxo, Justine