By Zorica Purlija.
[First winner Image Review 5.]


Yumi with pink rose

Nikon D4s; Nikkor 24-70mm; hand held

Don’s response

The best portraits make viewers believe that they’re looking through outward appearances and into the subject’s essential being. When, as in this instance, the photographer is also the subject’s mother, the challenge to create a faithful portrait can be particularly complex and subtle.

It’s commonplace to say that we parents are intimately familiar and even entwined with our children’s personalities. Paradoxically, that can make it extremely difficult to capture their essence and integrity as individuals. Most of the time we’re more likely to end up with a nice snapshot of our offspring which, while it is full of meaning for us, is unremarkable to anyone outside our circle of family and friends.

‘Yumi with pink rose’ effortlessly transcends mere snapshot status. Her expression is almost as still and blank as a 19th century portrait. Yet, calm and direct as it is, there is such an unmistakable, almost fierce intensity in her gaze that we can’t help but be convinced that we see, in some mysterious way, who she is.


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