Portrait Workshop – The whistleblower

Portrait Workshop
Whose portrait is it?

Writing about the aesthetics of Portraiture in lone Visions Crowded frame  (94) in his opening chapter Max Kozloff writes

“ Portrait photographs are invested with a routine deception”

Using this quote as a starting point consider how differently you would approach a portrait brief, depending on who has commissioned it.

Like the last studio workshop this is a collaborative workshop, which requires you to work as a team. Working in groups of 3, you need to make portraits of the same person for two different clients. The clients are the guardian, for which you need to produce work for a feature spread in the guardian magazine and a front book cover for Harper Collins publishing. Prior to taking any photographs do some research on the clients and see how differently they use photographs. The aim is to consider not only how you take a photograph but also how that photograph meets the clients requirements.

For the purposes of the brief, the person photographed is a ‘whistleblower’ , add your own back story to this commission to situate the story and help you decide how you will take the photographs.

Our response for the book cover

And our response for the magazine feature

The back story

The whistleblower is seen leaving his house. Next he is leaving the City Council where he has just acquired vital information from a government official. After he meets with a source, possibly a journalist, outside the Coventry Evening Telegraph building. Then he goes to the local BBC radio station to take speak in a show that he will reveal the truth.


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