2017 Photochallenge week 11 – Storytelling – In my town

Back to storytelling this week! The challenge in short:

  • we’re going to shoot a series of three images (simply add all three images in your main Facebook post)
  • in black and white
  • telling a story about your home town

Where our first storytelling challenge was about you, this week, we’re going to explore our surroundings. With so many participants from so many areas and countries, I’m really looking forward to seeing what makes your home town so special, and most of all, so dear to you.

So take your camera and start hunting for those typical people, street views, buildings that characterise your city. Or capture the rolling hills, quaint shops and community gatherings of your small town. Your grandparent’s house, your old school, the place where you met your future husband or wife…or the desolate isolation of the big city where you’re still trying to find your own sense of home. Anything goes, as long as it’s about you.

whitby
Whitby Harbour – Maaike Groenewege

About series

Series are a great way of telling a story, because the images in a series allow you to highlight various aspects of your topic, add a sense of time and gives you a certain structure to work with. In a good series, the images reinforce each other.

How do I make a series?

Putting images together doesn’t automatically create a series. The secret of a great series is that all images together form a coherent whole. You cannot leave any of the images out, without loosing some of the overall impact. This means that every image is a great image in itself and  adds to the effect of the series as a whole.

How do I connect my images to form a coherent series?

By Topic: the most obvious way, each of the images shows an aspect of the same topic. This is where your storytelling qualities have a chance to shine. What are you going to show? And why? Remember that sometimes, ‘not showing’ can create a very strong sense of suspense.

markthal2
Mensen van de Markthal – Maaike Groenewege
markthal3
Mensen van de Markthal – Maaike Groenewege
markthal5
Mensen van de Markthal – Maaike Groenewege

By shape: another way of creating a coherent set is by using the same ‘shape language’ in your series, such as squares/lines or  soft/blurry/undulating. Pay attention to contrast as well: your series becomes less strong if there’s one picture that catches the eye. In that case, consider killing a darling. Or two.

 

rennende-jochies
In Transit – Maaike Groenewege
plaza
In Transit – Maaike Groenewege
station4
In Transit – Maaike Groenewege

By perspective: another way to help you create coherence is to use the same perspective and distance to your subject in each image. This will create a natural flow from image to image, and will keep the viewer from having to switch too much.

Of course, there are many more ways, feel free to experiment!

Inspiration

For some great street/city/series photography, make sure to check out www.martinroemers.com, home of award-winning photographer Martin Roemers.

For examples of series photography, visit Lensculture’s section on visual storytelling/

The rules are pretty simple:

  • Post one original photograph (Your Image) shot each week per theme posted on this blog to Google+Facebook, or Flickr (or all three). Tag the photo #photochallenge and #photochallenge2017
  • The shot should be a new shot you took for the current weekly theme, not something from your back catalog or someone else’s image.
  • Don’t leave home without your camera. Participating in the 2017 PhotoChallenge is fun and easy.
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