Posts Tagged How Fluent Are You?

ON THE GO: How Fluent Are You?

Normandy Beaches © Knut Skjærven

Normandy Beaches © Knut Skjærven

It is rather familiar. I am sure you already know what I am going to write about here but you may not have thought it through in terms of photography. In terms of street photography.

It goes like this: If you want to look good you need to make sure that you do. Going for a job interview you need to dress for the occasion. Going on a first date you dress to make a grande impression. Make sure you smell good too.

Much of the visual communication we entangle works on a latent, subliminal level. Like in a job interview, like at a first date. Even in the photographs we send off  into virtual space. You don’t want to send conflicting, ambiguous signals. You want to be fluent and precise in what you say.

The word goes that you will never get a second chance to make a first impression. Being fluent in what you do is important. Particularly for visual communication like photography. It is a question of doing the right things in the right order. Not too much and not too little. To the point of the occasion.

There are interesting research results that you might want to consider. In trying to sell recipes for food one of the promotions was executed with a lean and easy to read typeface. The other promotion used a typeface that was harder to read.

Not only was the second promotion easier to comprehend. It effected the evaluation of the product as well.

Does this translate to photography? I think it does. The less fluently you are as a photographer the harder your message will be to understand. There is more to it. The less likeable you will be as a communicator.

The takeaway from this might well be to pay more attention to what a) you shoot and b) how you shoot it. Make sure you limit the visual options and that you position each part in an orderly way to one another. Be articulate.

As I said, most of us already know this. The question is how well do we handle it on a day to day basis? When out taking pictures. I know, I don’t’ always live up to it. Then some afterthought will do well. To prepare you better for the next time.

Could it be that particularly in street photography all encounters with people are like job interviews? Like the first date with a stranger? You want to fit the occasion when you show your work publicly.

You give the answers. Make sure you are fluent about it. Occam would love it if you were.

If you want more on this, please search for fluency effect on Google. There are plenty.

Common sense will do as well.

THE MAIN CATEGORY FOR THIS POST IS ON THE GO. CLICK TO READ MORE POSTS. THE POST IS ORIGINALLY WRITTEN FOR ON THE GO: WORKBOOK FOR NEW STREET AGENDA.

Copenhagen, August 15, 2014.
© Knut Skjærven

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