Photography: Getting BAck to Basics…

Every time I turn around there is something new. Confusing? Can be.

Trillium by Tree, Bob Grytten image. One of my first digital Published images for a cover of a Electrical Co Op Magazine in AlabamA
Trillium by Tree,
Bob Grytten image. One of my first digital Published images for a cover of a Electrical Co Op Magazine in Alabama

Living in the information world, there’s no lack of access to ideas to help us. Where to go? What to have? Things, things, things. If you listen to Bryan Adams, he says he doesn’t think about that stuff. He knows about the business but, he just likes making music.

Well, maybe we need to make more music. The rest falls into place.

If we made good images before, with film, we can make good images now, with digital.

I may have shown this image before; but, it helps illustrate my point. This is one of the first images I made with my first digital camera, a 3.2 MP  Point & Shoot Sony. I had to get down on my belly to have the flower in the foreground and phase the background soft – the composition elements being the same as film.

Simplify the image…

Mostly we try to put too much into an image. So, let’s start by simplifying our images.

Moth on brush
Moth on brush

Both background and around the edges…

On this image I have no idea what this critter is. It looks like a moth, but I don’t know. I did know that it had some possibility, but I had to soften the background to get rid of the distractions.  A long lens was used and we got as close to the object as I could.  Later in post production I cropped it, then used two controls  – Brightness and Contrast.

…three controls will handle abobut 70% of most of our images – Cropping, rightness and Contrast…

They’re available in almost every program.

Moth on brush cropped
Moth on brush cropped

There are a few rules or techniques to help improve our images. The Rule of Thirds as basic as it may seem, is also very powerful. It rocks the audience, so it’s good to use.

In this case we moved the Critter to fit the rule of thirds quadrant and if looking closely, it seems to have a little face on its back. Those little character things help to make the image more interesting.

Nature photography…  more that just making pretty pictures…

So, Photography and nature photography in particular, is more that just making pretty pictures and sharp images. It’s about communicating with our audience. Setting them up so they speak about what or who they are and what their life is about.

Chaos in Nature…

The next image is what we usually find in nature. Chaos!

Natures Chaos

But, there was also a shaft of light that could be interesting. Natures Chaos darkenedUsing the Brightness control we darken the entire image causing most of the Chaos to drop into the background and allowing our light to become the center of attention.

Not difficult solutions. But they can be dramatic. Interesting light is one of the element that helps determine what we use and what we leave behind.

Nearly any camera and lens will work for us to make images. Using what we have, then learning the controls, they soon become second nature. But, unless we study and get out there, we’ll never recognize the subtle things in nature and how our camera records them.

As time is spent the next tool or discussion will soon become obvious. Thanks for looking in. Your comments will be most appreciated.

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