Uses of light – Image 3 – Pieter Hugo

Pieter Hugo ‘This Place Must Be The Place’

Peter Hugo is a renound photographer who’s portaits question the truth about portrait photography. His incredibly gritty and dramatic portraits of honey collectors, workers on a vast technology dump in Ghana and actors working in “Nollywood”, the Nigerian film industry challenge self-expression in Africa, categorising people as the same, making them loose identity because of the similar gritty lighting he’s used on each person no matter how different they are. This internally look created by creative studio lighting helps his images shock and communicate. 

It is difficult to tell the exact lighting set up, but from the catch lights in the eyes that there you can tell there might have been two soft boxes positioned at each side of the face pointing downward, creating slight shadow under the cheek bone. Hugo also works with large format cameras for more of a communication between him and his subjects, it also provides a more contrasty image, making the portraits look a lot more gitty. To make the the faces of his subjects so dark he must have positioned the lights far way from his subjects so the intensity of light is reduced with the distance is has to travel. I really like the style of Hugo’s unique portraits, its definitely an interesting type of lighting that portrays his message well.

peter hugo - this must be the place - image 8


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