I rarely make traditional portraits, those images that consist of the head and shoulders of an individual looking straight at the camera, with nothing in the background but a plain white wall. I find such photos boring. And I find books of such photos, head-and-shoulders portrait after head-and-shoulders portrait, uninteresting.
Nevertheless, I took this portrait of a friend in a Toronto cafe, and indeed, my subject is looking straight at the camera in a photograph depicting her head and shoulders, more or less. However, the photo is made more interesting, in my view, by the design on the cafe wall – an outline of a girl’s profile – and the fragment of a girl on the left, whose shirt echoes the pattern on the shirt of my subject.
The combination of my subject’s expression and these other elements is what makes this a portrait worthy of sharing with you.