Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Photography is art

solitude, originally uploaded by EyeFidelity.

I was looking through the Point-and-Shoot photo pool on Flickr and came across this photo. I like it. Someone else may not.

That is why it is art.

Right now on Digital Photography School there is a post titled "15 Creative Uses Of Overexposure" It is interesting that there are so many degrading remarks about the photos. Although some people love the photos, and some people are extremely negative. Again, this is what makes it art. Someone likes it and someone doesn't. I think the interesting part is the unusually high number of negative remarks for this more positive community.

But the same goes with my photos. Lately I've taken some pretty lame photos, stuff that I don't like, I didn't really take the time for the shots, I was forcing the shot or whatever. The end result is not something I would gloat about.

In summary I have two points

1 Even though I may not like my photo, someone else may.

2 We all take photos that don't turn out the way we wanted. Sometimes to liking and some to our disliking.

Again, this is why it is art.

I'll close with some photos that I don't like, but maybe someone will.

Low Light 1

Low Light 2

Wall at the 112th Precinct

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

The best time to take photos

Ridgewood Bank at twighlight

The best light to take photos is at twilight. This is not because of the sensational light, which it is, but that the strength of the sunlight and the strength of other minuscule human powered lights become the similar making the sun the best (sensational) fill light ever. AND the light is not as direct.

I walk home from work about this time of day, at this time of year. It gives me a feeling that spring is approaching.

Try it. Take a photo at morning light or at sunset. Some of the best photos are captured during this time. In fact this is the best time to take photos of Christmas lights.

1 Use tripod. Your shutter speed will be slower because you should...
2 Turn off your flash. Keeping your flash on during this great light will change how hast long your shutter is open, if you are shooting in P mode like me.
3 Get some sky in there, and some human powered lights too.

Here are some other examples to try to replicate. And my favorite of the point-and-shoot Flickr pool is here.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Don't underestimate self portraits

I briefly mentioned self-portraits previously.

Self Portrait 2:30am
Every self-portrait tells a story. When you do something awesome, take a self-portrait, when you do something lame take a self-portrait. The above photo is a perfect example. I flew home really late one night. My wife picked me up and when we got home to the door we realized she had locked us out. It was a rental and it was really late. We couldn't get keys from the landlord until the next day and we didn't want to pay a locksmith for a 2AM call. We were hungry and went to the grocery store for food. She was decidedly upset about it all. I laugh at the moment, she still cringes a bit inside.

We ended up sleeping at my sister-in-law's apartment, and were able to get the door open the next day.

The Brothers
Self portraits are a photo journal. For one family reunion my family went skiing. For most of the day we stuck together and had great fun. This photo was taken when we brothers decided we wanted to take a few runs down the "most difficult" chutes. I think it was the steepest stuff I've ever skied. We don't get to ski together often.

My Family on Cannon Beach
Share your personality. Hands down the most fun thing to do with my camera is kite aerial photography (or kap). I absolutely love it.

Express yourself. Just as writing is a free form of expression so is photography. A self-portrait is much like a personal diary. It is an expression of something internal. Self-portraits can be personal and special and they can be fun and playful. Please, please I ask you to take a look at these amazing self portraits by dcapfoto on flickr. You will not be disappointed.

And remember you don't have to take an amazing photo for your self-portrait to be amazing it all depends on your "self".

Thursday, February 5, 2009

From the Archives

I was in New York City for one day. I had only a few hours left to kill. So I went to Central Park. Central Park is so big. I had no idea how big it was. I was in the middle of this big city and I couldn't even tell. I just started walking around. Every turn I took I was more and more astounded at where I was. Then my path collided with another path and I looked up and saw this path and bridge.

Central Park bridge

I felt like I was the first one to ever find this bridge after years of being hidden. I felt lucky. So I took a picture. Really I may have snapped one or two, I can't remember but it turned out great. This photo and it reminds me of my first time exploring Central Park. After I took the picture it was time to head back to the airport. And off I went.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Three things I love about my point-and-shoot camera

Yes DSLR cameras have their place but not always in my bag. But I do always carry my little point-and-shoot. Here are three reasons I love my point-and-shoot camera.

Fitting in a tight space

1 Fits anywhere
Not just in a pocket either. One day I was trying to rewire the stereo receiver. I didn't want to pull it out and disconnect all the wires, just reconnect a couple. It was a tight squeeze and after a few tries of searching with my hand for the right connections I became frustrated. Then in a moment of genius I put my camera behind the receiver and took a photo. Then I could see exactly where I was trying to connect the wires. I made the right connections easily, thanks to my little camera.


2 Self-portraits
Never underestimate the power of a good self portrait. Point-and-shoot cameras enable easy self portraits. A self portrait is like a writing in your diary but you are taking a photo not writing. Too many people are self conscious about self portraits. But if you write a blog or write in a journal, you write about good days and bad. The same goes for self portraits take self portraits on good days and bad. The story behind this photo is here.

Haystack Rock from a kite

3 Kite photography
This is actually the real reason I bought my point-and-shoot. I wanted to take photos from a kite. Kite photography is most easily achieved with a big kite and a small camera. It is so fun to reel the kite back in wondering what photos are on it, [sigh] just like the days of film. I love the different perspective from the sky. I've since become addicted to having my camera with me always.

There are many reasons why I like my camera but these are at the top.