I don’t know if you’ve heard, but another Star Wars movie came out this month, December 2015. Everywhere you look, it’s impossible to miss the marketing or headlines of this smash hit addition to the Star Wars movie series. Indeed, this Christmas season seemed more like Star Wars season.
I saw the film last week and loved it.
I loved the story.
I loved the characters.
But most of all, I loved the photography.
I guess in the motion picture world it is referred to as cinematography, but I call it photography to make a point. The principles that make exceptional photography are the same principles that make exceptional cinematography. The two go hand-in-hand and we can learn volumes about how to improve our own photography by studying the master movie makers.
Freeze almost any frame from “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” and it could stand alone by itself as a great still shot.
This is no accident. Just watch the behind the scenes of any major motion picture and you’ll see that every frame, every set, every scene is a result of incredible attention to detail and planning. What if we put the same kind of hard work into our photographs? How do you think people would respond to your photography if you did much more to craft a frame than just press a button and take a snapshot? What would happen if we as photographers always remembered that photography can be an art. Photography can be good art.
Star Wars is good art.
Good art connects with people.
Lot’s of people.
Record-breaking box office numbers of people.
When I think back to when I fell in love with Star Wars as a kid, it really wasn’t the three 1970s and 1980s films I fell for, it was the universe of artwork that I connected to. It was a universe with vivid detail that I wanted to live in and experience. When love and passion is put into a project people can feel that. People get it.
Photographer Marco Grob “gets it.” Grob is a freelance photographer for Time and was given the assignment to photograph the cast for the magazine. (Awesome assignment right!?) It’s clear from the images he created that he understood the importance of this project to the collective culture. It’s fun to hear him talk about being close to Harrison Ford and the other actors and working inside their personal space. Watch the behind the scenes video below and then enjoy the portraits of the Star Wars: The Force Awakens cast.