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Thank you all for the responses emails and comment on my last blog post, this has been most encouraging especially as I am more an image creator than a writer.
Thank you Karen K, for this inspiration.
I'd like a part two to this one and go a bit deeper with where you get the ideas for composition/ angles, whatever... how you open your eyes to the possibilities
It's not about a how to for other people... talk about how you do it for yourself. I always wonder about that with artists - how they view their world and present it in their chosen medium. The difference between being able to "recreate" and being creative
How does my mind work how do I see and record the world around me?
Wow a BIG question.
The simple answer is; this develops over time, experimenting, learning from mistakes and perseverance, much like any other skill in life it is learned and developed.
One of the first extensions of hand eye coordination is as a child one learns to use is a spoon, which progresses to other tools and mindsets. My choice of tool is a camera and accessories; my canvas is the world around me and my pallet painting with light.
The technical aspect is not important at the moment as most people have a compact camera or phone that will in 90% of cases take and expose a reasonable photograph.
What needs to be learned and acquired is an eye for beauty around us, there is no right or wrong way to capture the moment or beauty; however you see the photograph is right for you, it is how you see the world, and wish to portray your vision to others. I use three words before every photograph.
“Think compose expose”.
First think and look at your subject, is this a wide angle shot or a close up? What is the most important aspect? I have looked at a scene that has so much in the photograph it is just confusing many items and no centre focal point. Select your subject, even if what started as a panoramic photograph is whittled down to just an ornate door or hinge.
Avoid what I call the family holiday snaps, Have you been bored by sitting through a slide show with commentary such as. “This is Doris on the beach in Mexico but I cut her head off. This is Doris on the end of the pier in Brighton, well she should have been in the photograph but I took this after she fell in the water! I can think of nothing more boring than people explaining what should be there.
Today it is not so much slide shows more one on one showing photographs on a phone, but the principle is always the same.
“Think compose expose”
Think is this of interest to others and is one photograph telling the entire story?
Compose do I want the beach only the subject or both and which is my focal point? Maybe put Doris off to one side of the frame and show he expanse of the beach.
Expose, ie press the button, today automatic camera will give you the best average exposure possible.
Angles are very important this is one of the first points I teach when running a class, and as a practical experiment we go outside and take photographs while crawling around on hands and knees, no photograph can be taken higher than 2 feet off the ground. This makes one think and see the world in a different way. Dogs eye view.
Photography is not just taken from a standing eye level position, get down and dirty; get high and mighty, shoot through something maybe a window or tyre swing. Be bold be different be unusual. Make people look twice at your work.
The average time a person looks at a photograph is 2 seconds, yup only 2 seconds, choose to make the viewer think make a double take maybe turn their head and view for 5 second you have a winner, then possible chance of selling your work.
Photography is taking a three dimensional world and making it two dimensional, there are ways to fool the eyes into with an image on a flat piece of paper and make it look more realistic. I wrote about this in my first E Book back in 2009, “Improve your photography by 5.45 this afternoon.”
F- M- B.
Foreground. Middle ground. Back ground.
I order to make a photograph look deep and interesting especially with a wide angle lens is to have all three of these components in one photograph.
Choose something right in the foreground such as flowers a bush a tree. Look toward the middle to an interesting point, maybe a boat car person, finally ensure there is a back ground such as mountains trees, house.
Three positive points at different distances from the lens give the impression of a three dimensional photograph. After all life is an illusions use it all to your advantage.
Photographer Ansel Adams said.
“Photographs are not taken Photographs are made.”
Ansel Adams would visit the same place dozens of times and maybe never take a photograph. He had a vision for each landscape in the right light, and would sit for hours waiting for the right moment. This was pre digital using a large format camera and often only took one photograph that day.
This answers the most asked question “How long did it take you to get that photograph”? The photograph was probably taken in 125th of a second, in reality it could have taken days month years of planning and waiting.
Be creative go in close, fan back do the unexpected, Think compose expose. Be you, be different, and study other photographers to give you ideas that are ideas not to be copied but put your own slant on the world.
If you have questions I always do my upmost to answer in person in a reasonable time, and always happy to hear your comments.
Ha I was going to finish there,,,,, But remember do not take criticism to heart take it as a learning curve to help or ignore. Everyone is a critic, only you have your unique way of seeing and recording the world. Family is mostly always encouraging outsiders can be more open and objective.
Above all enjoy what you do seek to be different, see the world from high and low close and far. I would be delighted to see any of your photographs and if you would like constructive pointers happy to do so.
Until the next time keep thinking composing exposing. Practice makes perfect.