Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Tema Stauffer's 'Teenage boy'

"Jesus boy," Tema Stauffer, All rights reserved

This portrait of a boy at Barton's Spring in Austin, TX by the talented Tema Stauffer stopped me cold (it's being auctioned here).

How do some photographers consistently make great portraits? I wish I knew. I have always thought they must have a gift (and maybe a few behavioral tricks) for making subjects trust them. I'm not a photographer who can do that. I don't know whether Stauffer is. I do know that sometimes it doesn't matter. A subject, sometimes a perfect stranger will, for his own reasons, offer himself exactly as he is at that moment. Eye to eye transmission.