Where Does Photographic Style Come From?

Photo/Text/Editing: Victor Osaka

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What informs my style as a photographer? I asked myself this question recently. I have come to the conclusion that I am influenced by many things—from current trends in photography, to the technology of the equipment I use, and the range of photography I grew up admiring. And then, there is personal experience…

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Reflecting on my childhood, the biggest influence on my style is due to an unfortunate condition. As a child my eyesight was so poor that everything was a blur. I could not even discern the leaves on a tree.

I remember stepping out of the optometrist’s office wearing my first pair of glasses. Right outside his office was a large tree. I looked up and for the first time saw the beauty of the leaves on a tree. They were shimmering in the sun. I can still see and even hear the sound those leaves made in the gentle breeze. I could not take my eyes off this amazing sight.

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So, it is interesting to review my body of work and recognize this important influence on my style. To this day, the images that most speak to me have a very narrow depth of field.

Sharp edges grow from the point of focus and the remainder of the image is blurred so as to bring total attention to the sharp details.

I recommend taking a look at your own library of images to see if you can identify what influences your style. It is a very revealing exercise.

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2 responses to “Where Does Photographic Style Come From?

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