I find myself perusing Flickr (usually when I'm procrastinating at work) to see all of the beautiful photography that is out there just waiting to be seen. I am enthralled by the images that make me stop and wonder what is happening, what the photographer is trying to tell me. Storytelling photographs engage the viewer and invite them to participate. They don't always show faces yet still convey emotion through body language along with the use of light and composition. It's a participatory art form which is what makes it so attractive to me. It is so easy to convey the obvious in a photograph, but it takes some real thought to draw your viewer in by leaving things unanswered.
Here in landlocked Oklahoma we have tons of lakes and catfish, but no seaweed or seashells. When my children visited the ocean for the first time I shot lots of photos that showed the excitement on their faces as their toes felt the give of the sand, the waves splashing over their feet and they tasted the saltiness of the sea. What I love about this image above is that it does not show the obvious, but to me it shows the real adventure that was going on as they discovered someplace totally new to them. We brought home lots of seashells and souvenirs, but this is my favorite thing I brought home from our trip to Amelia Island.
There are no faces, no real clues as to what's going on here except for three girls who climbed a fence. After I posted this photo on Flickr and Facebook the comments were so interesting to read because everyone wanted to know what was on the other side of the fence. One of my favorite comments said that it really captured the curiosity of childhood. I just loved that because instead of a just a fun shot it turned into something more real....more true.
Ernest Hemingway said "Write all the story, take out all the good lines, and see if it still works."
We would love to see some of your favorite storytelling photos in our Flickr Pool We want to know your tips and tricks!