Wednesday, September 26, 2007

The Typewriter Woman...

I had an interesting assignment today. I photographed a woman whose typewriter repair business was forced to move from a store front to her garage (after her rent was raised exponentially due to new development...familiar story).

Over 20 years ago, she purchased the business from her husband whom she divorced. He thought that she wouldn't last two months, much less two decades. It was a real touching story about perserverance and quiet determination.

I wanted to photograph her with some lights to give the editors an option for a slicker contrastier photo, but also a softer and more sentimental portrait. For the former I set up an old typewriter on the desk and had her lean against it. I shot a few wide shots, showing more of the garage, but decided to get in closer and use the typewriter to draw the viewer in. For the second look, I found a large window and positioned her next to it to get some good light and asked her to hold a smaller typewriter. It was perfect. Nice and symmetrical. I loved the shape of her hands on the keys so I took a quick detail shot of it.

It's always these little windows into people's lives that I love about photography.

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