Dawoud Bey

As I was looking at Dawoud Bey portraits, I realized that most of the portraits that he took the person are looking straight at the camera and the same time all of them has an expression and a pose. Which gives this story behind and it sends this mysterious message to the viewer. I also realized the light in these portraits is coming across from the classroom windows which works well because gives this natural and calm feeling from the person. I also like how he framed taking these portraits, I noticed that his portraits are from chest to head and he does not fill the whole frame, he leaves some space from each side. The foreground-background works very well with these portraits because it shows the environment that these people are at and like I said these are students. Looking at his work I got some ideas of how to approach taking portraits, for example, giving a person a pose and ask them how they truly feel which they would naturally make a gesture and an expression. Also what environment is well to take this portraits.

One thought on “Dawoud Bey

  1. rmichals

    It generally makes a portrait more engaging if the subject is looking at the camera.

    I know that the lighting looks very natural in Bey’s work as if the light is coming from a window. However he is using lights in every case. Try it sometime and you will see that window light falls off pretty quickly from the actual window.


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