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An ideal portrait session: Jeff – a tractor collector

In 2016, I carried out a portrait project of collectors (now part of the Documentary Portrait series). The first subject I photographed was Jeff, a tractor collector. Jeff lived about 150 kms from Melbourne and owned a farm with livestock and poultry. Jeff’s hobby was collecting tractors and engines, which was passed down to him by his father along with a collection of hundreds of tractors and engines from all over Australia.

I met Jeff and got to know him before scheduling a photoshoot on a suitable day. On the day of the shoot, Jeff took me on a tour of his farm, which could also be called a warehouse storage for his tractors and car parts.

Jeff owns a very large farm, but it seems that it is still not spacious enough for his collecting hobby.

Jeff said that these are the cars he kept to use for spare parts. Restoring vintage tractors is his biggest interest.

For Jeff, these are extremely important and valuable vintage tractors in his collection.

In the first experiment, the photo shows Thomas measuring light and white balance. He is a photography classmate of mine.

Jeff still looks awkward in this experiment. He confessed that he has never had his portrait taken before.

I asked Jeff if these vintage tractors are still functioning, and he immediately started a few of them and showed me that they are still operational.

The photo above is the result of the photoshoot, with Jeff posing in front of a vintage tractor made in Melbourne 100 years ago that is still operational.

I am happy that Jeff felt comfortable during the photoshoot, and I appreciate even more that he gave me a very relaxed moment in front of my lens. In just a few snaps, Jeff looked like a professional model.

For me, this was also an ideal portrait session.

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