How to Photograph Humor
Having the ability of seeing humor in everything is a gift that not that many of us posses. We can often see an act, a subject, an event or any random thing that will bring a smile upon our face and will lighten our day, even changing our mood from foul to fair.
Photographing humor is a purposeful theme which intention is to seek out and record images of subjects; people, animals and situations where a humorous act or happening is present. Anything that brings a smile is a fair subject to photograph.
However, there are some situations that should be avoided like finding something funny in someones' appearance other than clothing, perhaps a physical defect. Your goal is to be in a position to record something funny and humorous not to do it at the expense of someone else.
What are good samples will be dependent a lot on your perspective and your own sense of humor. Not all of us find the same things to be funny since it is mostly a matter of taste and this theme involves capturing images that are clearly humorous to many and will make an audience laugh, not necessarily having them rolling on the floor, but just enough to bring a smile to their face.
The basic set up is a camera and a lens with several ranges such as a 80mm to 200mm, as it will allow you some flexibility. Do close ups of the face to record facial expressions and if possible isolate the subject against their surroundings if they add to the shot, otherwise just isolate the subject by itself.
Most humorous situations are spontaneous, rarely are they planned, and be very aware that an audience is quite adept at noticing a forced smile or feigned emotion, thus spontaneity is key. Funny signs, funny adds, funny acts or antics performed by pets or wildlife, a big smile on a little child, two adults behaving like kids or acting silly. Interactions between people, pet and human interactions such as when we dress our pets in ridiculous outfits; ever wondered what your pet would say if it could talk?
There are literary thousands of humorous acts that we all witness almost every single day, but to record them you need to have a camera. Make it your purpose to choose a time when you will just go places and be alert for the possible humorous shot and have the camera ready at all times. You can't repeat spontaneity.
However, with a little creativity and cleverness, some humor can be staged. This is mostly done with still life arranged in funny proportions and can also be accomplished by adding text to photographs through a digital software program.
Often humor is found in the most unusual of places or where you least expect it like in a coffee mug. Have you ever paused and really took a look at some of the designs found in many coffee mugs? Some are really full of comical and funny artistic drawings. Store signs sporting humorous sayings make for some of the funnies of samples and it speaks volumes about the management and staff and their sense of humor.
Bottom line, this particular photo exercise is not something you can really plan for unless you have some design in mind and can arrange them in an humorous fashion.
Do however decide if your images will be humorous to everyone, and not offensive since some humor can be risque and this may offend some. There is an ample market for humor in photography, not the least is the greeting card industry.
Most of the time you just have to be on the look out for instances where the opportunity just happens to present itself and you are there ready to capture the moment, and quite often one just has to be plain lucky.
If everything else fails and you fail to find some humor at least you can be comfortable in the feeling that you tried, and if you happened to record some funny moments in time, then at least, hopefully, they made you smile. And isn't laughter the best medicine? or so I have heard it said.
- 100+ Funny Photos Taken At Unusual Angle [Humor]
They say a picture is worth a thousand words, but sometimes this ain't exactly right. Distance overlapping, positions, and timing can sometimes create a brand
© 2011 Luis E Gonzalez
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