It’s Here! The Official Unofficial Glossary of Peter Hurley “Hurleyisms!”
Above: We’re both shabangin‘ and squinching but the flatmosphere had us looking pretty ambifacial, but it’s mostly because we were worried that the photographer who took this (Kim Doty) might try to apply the brick wall technique.
OK, you see that caption above? It’s packed with some Hurleyisms, which are terms the one and only Peter Hurley has coined to describe what to do (and what not to do) when photographing headshots, and he was using these Hurleyisms pretty liberally during his in-studio guest duties on The Grid this past Wednesday (Peter was AWESOME by the way). Anyway, I mentioned during the show that there should be an online glossary of some sort somewhere with all these Hurleyterms, and lo and behold — now there is.
Ladies and Gentlemen, I welcome you to to the Official Unofficial Peter Hurley Glossary of Headshot Jargon (with definitions from Peter Hurley himself):
A characteristic, attribute or trait that an image possesses producing a visceral gut reation of approval in the artist who upon viewing it for the first time rejoices by yelling SHABANG! at the top of their lungs.
A place you don’t want to visit — where the subject lives when they don’t get jam their forehead towards the camera.
It’s your mojo – it’s your go-to moves to engage the subject. Could be comedy, could be chill and calm, whatever it is that works for you to draw something out of your subject.
The environment a photographer creates during a shoot when they’ve got zero schtick.
Massive Front Shoulder Syndrome is when you turn the body 3/4 and then when you shoot it, the lens choice you’re using makes their front shoulder look three times larger than their back shoulder.
A character of a very small percentage of the population that can be photographed from any angle of their face still looks good.
A unattractive thickening of the neck when you cortort your subject into a strange and awkward position, to where their shoulders turn away from the camera, but their head is aimed back directly toward the camera creating a bulky looking trapesizous and a tense sternocleidomastoid.
HOLDING YOUR SUB
The main move to slim down arms when photographing somebody who is overweight. (see video below)
One liners foisted upon the subject to gain a facial reaction.
Narrowing the distance between the lower eyelid and the pupil. It’s not quite a squint, it’s a pinching of the lower eyelids, so the subject appears more confident than they actually are.
A Shabangin’ shot that makes you want to stare at that sucker.
Beaty Eye Syndrome — when your subject has one eye smaller than the other.
Big Pupil Syndrome — this happens when you shoot strobes and the pupil grows so you lose real estate in the Iris, which means you lose color in the eye. This doesn’t happen with continuous light sources — just strobes.
The Brick Wall Technique
It’s what you pose people in front of when you’ve completely run out of ideas — you’ve got nothing left in your tank, and you’ve got a brick wall close to your proximity, so you throw them in front of it and take the shot.
Well folks, there ya have it! Thanks to Peter for taking the time to glosserize his terms for me here on the blog.
That’s it from here in Houston, Texas (I’m here for my seminar today — next step New York City on March 3rd). Hope you all have a great weekend, and we’ll see you back here next week.
P.S. Peter has organized the first ever “Headshot Crew Cruise” this April (on Norwegian Cruise Lines no less), where you cruise with Peter and his guest instructors from NYC down to Bermuda and back, and you learn and laugh and chill from port to port. The cool this is — the training part is free — just get your cabin, and you’re “in” to all the live classes (and fun) along the way. Here’s a link with all the details.