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Expressing emotions in photography is a key skill to develop

by Yvette Depaepe
Published the 25th of November 2022


Human sounds convey emotions better than words do.
e all know a number of non-verbal expressions of emotions like laughter, cries and sighs.
These vocalizations are recognizable across vastly different cultures throughout history.
Emotions undoubtedly play a central role in human lives. They are universally felt by all on this planet.


 'Untitled' by Raphael Guarino



Photography can be a highly visual art, but like any other art form, it’s not just about aesthetics, it’s about telling a story.
Capturing authentic emotions and feelings in an image is the key to creating beautiful and truly compelling images.

There are many emotions that can be represented in an image. In all of our photographs, we strive to highlight joy, happiness, sadness, despair, and love.  However the challenge is how to express emotions and feelings in images and make it appear genuine.

Photography is important because it can influence our capacity to empathize.  It has an incredible ability to convey emotion.  It makes us “FEEL” without words, it gives a silent voice to the images.
Photography is more important than ever because we need visual imagery that reflects our connectedness, especially in a world that can be as inhumane as ours.
Photography is powerful because we can place ourselves into the perspective of those we see in an image.


Some simple tools to make your images emotional.

It is very important in any photograph, and it has to be right when expressing emotions. For example when you express anger, you might want to keep the scene in dark colours, while images expressing joy and happiness are mostly bright and shiny.

Colour can be an important component.  For example, red can represent danger but also romance.  Green has a calming effect and creates a sense of tranquillity.  When considering various combinations of colours, the possibilities are endless.  BUT don't forget the power of black and white images!

It is essential to have an appropriate composition to express any emotion. Sometimes, a slight change of camera angle can make all the difference and an emotionally faded image comes to life.

When you want to emphasize a certain part of your image, you put in sharp focus while making other parts more blurred, but this rule isn't written in stone. Sometimes the blurred parts of a photograph create all the mood and hint the viewer about the story.  So, it is not about the image being sharp or not but about using the focus in such ways that will contribute to the final result.

These elements can be used in endless combinations and it is the photographer's job to find and create the ones that work, the ones that convey emotions to the viewer in a powerful way.


I did a search in the 1x archives and found many images that moved me to tears, laughter, joy or sadness.  I hope that through this short gallery, you will not hold back any emotions and will be touched as much as I was by what you see and feel.


Each one of these photographs speaks for itself, all are a silent vocalization of emotions.


'Mother and child' by Fethi Turgut  



'Sheperd' by Mustafa Cebecioglu



 'Smile' [Tibet] by Sarawut Intarob



'black woman' by Javier De la Torre



Smile' [Nikoleta] by Martin Krystynek MQEP



by Mehdi Mokhtari


'BW Mood portrait' by Mikhail Potapov



by Raphael Guarino



'Citadel' by Kim Scianghetti 



'This is the miracle of life' by Yvette Depaepe



'Tears' by ShayanNabizadeh



'tears in the dark' by Roby De Maria



'Tears' by Victoria Ivanova 



'Tears are words the heart can't express



n/t by Stephen Clough         



'Dream' by Hari Sulistiawan



'Happiness' by Murat Ozcelik



'happiness' by Hamad Al Zaabi



'Joy of Childhood' by Avishek Das



'A sign of Love' by Marc Apers



'I Wanna Break Free' by Mirela Momanu



'Dance is the language of the soul' by Yvette Depaepe



'Take care of me' by Norbert Becke



'Lilly' by Raphael Guarino



'A man & his dog' by Marc Apers



'the point of no return' by Tatyana Druz



'Absence' by Vito Guarino


Thank u :)
Thanks so much !
Thank you very much!!!
Wow powrful photography so well put together Congratulations to all..
Unique and beautiful works. Stories flow from them...
An excellent article Yvette with awe inspiring images! Thank you!
Thank you, dear Lucie !
Thanks so much. An excellent article!
Thank you for your appreciation, dear friend !
Thank you for this fantastic article Yvette!
Many thanks, Vasil !!! So glad so many members like this article ;-)
Beautiful photographies it can be great to put a like on images in the article
When you click on the images, you are re-directed to the portfolio, Serge. You can like an image and click on the return arrow to be back in the article ;-)
Moving images Yvette. Thanks to you and the photographers selected. Best regards, Patrick
Thanks Patrick ;-) Glad you like the article !
An article of great interest and full of creative inspirations, enriched by a collection of portraits of the highest technical level and of extraordinary intensity. Congratulations for your great effort, dear Yvette, and to all the authors of these wonderful images.
Thank you so much, Sergio !!!
Wonderful article Yvette and you always manage to find the most interesting images for these articles!
Thank you, Kim ... There are so many more interesting images. Makes it difficult to choose ;-)
harika tebrikler... :)
Thanks, my friend!
Very revealing photos of the subject and impressive for their quality! Didactic! Thanks!
Thanks a lot, Jorge!
Fabulous article and wonderful pictures illustrating the various moods. Thanks to all contributors!
Thanks for your appreciation, Jan!
a touching article and selection of photos, congratulations!
Many thanks, dear Uwe!
thank you so much
My pleasure, Martin! I had a hard time to pick one out of your portfolio ;-)
Thanks a lot for the wonderful article and the selected emotional and artistic works! Learning! Respect!
Thank you so much, Wanghan Li...
Wonderful article. Congratulations to all the authors!
Thank you, dear Mikhail.
Same as for Martin, Mikhail ... you have a lot of images full of emotions. I like the one I picked out ... ;-)
Congratulations to the authors !!! It was so hard to make a choice, 1x is full of touching emotional and excellent images. Respect for all those photographs too. Cheers, Yvette
A wonderful article Yvette !!!
Many thanks, dear Colin !