Creativity Exercise: The Backside

When we first start out in photography we learn to focus on the face. We capture the person’s identity, characteristics, expressions. But what about a feature that is often neglected, ignored or even often referred to as boring…the back. This week we are leaving the face alone and going to the backside!


Shooting the back can add a sense of mystery and wonderment to your images while raising questions in the viewer’s mind. What is the subject doing? Where are they going? Is the subject happy? Sad? Are they focused on one thing in particular? An image of just the back without a person’s face or identity allows the viewer to make their own assumptions about what is happening.

There is a sense of double vision when shooting a back. The viewer sees the vision of the photographer and that of the subject that we cannot see. It leaves something to the viewer’s imagination.


This week try and capture as many different scenes of backs as you can.

You can simply take a portrait of a back or you can include the environment to help tell a story. Try shooting in different lighting, or from different perspectives (straight on, up high, down low, up close, from far away).

BONUS TIP: If you’ve ever considered street photography, shooting from behind is an easy way to start!

As always, if you’d like to share we would love to see your images, so be sure to tag us on Instagram with #unscriptedmentoring.

- Jenny