Selecting the photographs in a project has now progressed to where this is one of the most important photographic tasks I do once I finish photographing. It used to be that getting that “one great photograph” to hang on the wall was my goal for photography. My photographic goal is to now tell a complete story with a group of photographs. Figuring out how many and which photographs I need to tell my story is now very important. While some photographers look for “the” photograph, I have come to the conclusion “the” photograph doesn’t arrive alone; it shows up with friends. If I had to make an analogy, selecting the photographs to be in a folio is creating the vocabulary of the folio.
Once the photographs have been selected, it’s necessary to put them in the right order to tell the story. If we continue with the literal analogy, sequencing the photographs is writing the story. It’s necessary to lead the audience through the photographs in order to tell the story. Particular images need to be displayed in a definite sequence to make sure the mood, intention and feelings required to tell the story are properly conveyed. There are beginning images, ending images and key images throughout the folio. In between these images are bridges or transitional images that fill in the details of the story and make the connections between the key images.
Like most everything worthwhile, it’s a very easy concept to explain. The problems, difficulties and frustrations arise when faced with a pile of prints that must be sequenced to tell a story.