Photography is something that most people can relate to, and they often have their own views on it. If you include amateurs, millions of photos are taken every single day – but this in itself does not bring a better understanding of photography.
What is it that gives a photo its eternal quality, while most of them are for the eyes of the user alone, and barely that?

Success demands the keenest sensibilities of the photographer – what is your focus of attention, what do you actually see, and what is it you want to say?
What innate professionalism is called for to catch the moment and produce the finished article? The photographer’s ability to empathise with his subject – with what is being communicated – is another indispensable element: photos can be reinforcing, but they can also be revealing in their perception of body language and expressions. A successful photo is a combination of rhythm and movement.

Given the expertise and the will, the photographer can experience lifelong development. During the last year, both Arnold Newman and the recently deceased Helmut Newton had major exhibitions of their work produced after the age of 80. Irving Penn – at the age of 87 – had a portrait of Nicole Kidman on the cover page of Vogue.

A good photo sees something and tells a story, but it also tells a story about the photographer.

For many years Paul Bernhard has been untiring in his quest to find his own, personal mode of expression, motivated by a all-pervading desire to achieve improvement at every level. From his very first years as an apprentice it has been a pleasure to follow his enthusiasm and compelling need to express himself. Despite his relative youth, he has come far and has established a position as one of the foremost portrait photographers in Norway. It will be interesting to watch his further development.

Hans Jørgen Brun
European Master of Photography.
Fellow of British Institute of Professional Photographers.