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Diana Vilic

Blogger Visual Marketing Student Photographer Coffee Addict

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Guts of a portrait

  • 2:07:00 PM
  • by

My family comes from a country where people say, the country lives inside their duša, their soul. No matter where you go, your city, lives within you. I was raised on this belief, even if no one realized I was being raised on it.

One of my professors, upon the first day of class, told me I had a European soul. I carried myself differently. I'd never heard it worded like that. Typically, people just told me I wasn't like them. Never really in a bad way, just an observation.

My High School art teacher, used to tell me that my work had soul, I captured people like they were. I used to want to be a director, as many of you know. When I started photography, it was just a medium to tell stories. That's all I really ever wanted to do my whole life. I guess as I developed as an artist, it became my style. To capture someone in a soulful manner.

I've been thinking about that idea lately. The idea of a soul. When we look at different cultures, everyone says something different about someones soul. But, almost everyone agrees they exist. Of course, that's up to everyone's own opinion. But, it's an interesting thought to think about. Especially when it comes to art.

Everyone is going to tell you something different. Same with the definition of a portrait.

Portraits are very intimate things, that's why as a culture we're so thrown off by them. There are even cultures in existence that believe a photo takes away their soul.

I think when you look at a photo, you should see a person for what they are. I like portraits that you look at again, just to be sure you're getting it all in.

As much as I love perfection, glossy images, clearly photoshopped models, to me it's still art. Even if very few people appreciate it. I love photos that are raw. I like real emotion and real feelings. But, I also love to shoot subjects in a unseen beauty. Pretty much, I shoot what I see (like most photographers), but I put a real image of someone out there. I always have.

A lot of people don't like my style, and that's fine. I make my subjects see themselves as I see them. Some people find beauty in their flaws. Things we hate, don't look like flaws in a photograph.

When it comes to photography, a photographer captures the guts of the photo, it's soul. If you ask a artist, depending on their medium, they define a portrait differently. A painter might tell you a portrait is to the likeness of a subject. A friend upon realizing he wanted to be a tattoo artist, told me a portrait has to look like all the good things in a person. A photographer on the other hand, might tell you, a portrait is in the moment.

The idea of duša came into my head, like may other times, at a recent photoshoot. I was set to shoot headshots, something I started my photography doing. It's my comfort zone as an artist. I couldn't help but thing of the idea of everything we ever experienced and raised as living inside our soul.

What's the soul of your subject. Do they laugh easily? Do they smile in the rain? How do they take their coffee? All things a portrait should display. When you look at a portrait, you should get a sense that you know that person. That's why magazine covers with celebrities sell. It's not that they're attractive faces, magazines would use models if it just came down to attraction. Magazines use certifies, because everyone wants to feel close to the person they admire. We all want to look at a photo, and think "wow that person is JUST like me".

When you take a photo of someone, what does it say? When someone takes a photo of you, what are they saying?

We live in a image based world. Like it or not, our duša is our business card to the world. Who are we, what did we come from?

A portrait has soul, if it doesn't it's not really a portrait. It's just an image.

Marketing student with a focus in visual marketing with a addiction to coffee.


  1. Yess! i'm agree with your teacher..
    I can see your model's soul on her smile <3


    Indah l Live Indah's Life


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