Film noir

Film Noir Compositions in Photography

What are my favorite cinema films for inspiration and motivation in photography?

Film noir.

This style of composition when applied to photography — very enigmatic, interesting, mysterious and beautiful!

Composing it

Out of these three photos I shot, the ability to obscure more of the scene as better. For example shot 2 there’s too much of his mouth. The last shot has too much bright clothing. The lesson:

When in doubt, frame closer, and obscure more of the frame.

How to do it

Single light source — preferably harsh. Just a single floor lamp (adjustable neck) works well.

Also, ideally you can get a strong and harsh shadow.

Why we like the noir

STREET by KIM42 clear and dark

When thinking about aesthetics — a darker, more cruel aesthetic as more appealing and beautiful to us. As Nietzsche might have said — a tragic Greek, Dionysian aesthetic.

The darker, the better.

My DARK SKIES OVER TOKYO as probably my best work thus far, for the dark mood and aesthetics.


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Prague, 1968. Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos
Prague, 1968. Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

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