On our hike………
Even though there had recently been discussion about our hikes taking longer than usual due to an increase in my photo taking, at a point on this morning’s hike, Jen and I both thought we’d like to take 5 minutes for a couple of staged photos with the morning red sky looking so pretty. We wanted the shoot to be brief, ie: quick, so as not to make our hike end up taking too long so Jen can get to work on time.
I say, “Ok but let’s quickly think of something different to do in the shot setup. I’m tired of the shots we’ve been taking lately.”
We talked about today being Halloween and came up with the idea of doing a scary shot where one person is strangling the other. Sounded ok I guess. (All the while my head is thinking about what others would think seeing, yes, another shot of Jen and Ann, on our hike, using the same setup, with the same silly poses (that I love, but I’m sure others are rolling their eyes in the back of their heads saying, “There they go again.”).
With no time to do much, I try to direct their positions, their characters, etc.
“Open your mouth, give me your profiles, and let’s see some action.”
“Look like you mean it.”
“Stop thinking about how you are going to look and get in touch with the character you are portraying.”
“No, you’re smiling. “(I’m a mean director.)
All the while trying to gain focus in the dark.
Trying to keep only half of the on-camera flash from firing. (holding my finger horizontally over the lower part of the flash, hoping to stop the flash from lighting the ground, only lighting the girls from their ankles upward.)
Anyway, I shot about 7 frames and say, “That’s good.”
Later in our hike after Jen and Ann had been sharing some behind the scenes thinking, driven by pride, that needed to be discussed to clear away some misunderstanding during our hike, I shared some of my secretive prideful thinking after I viewed the photos we’d taken.
Here it goes:
Some of the people that follow my blog are REAL photographers.
They’re going to see these photos and see all the light spilling on the ground where it shouldn’t be spilling.
They’re going to realize I was shooting with on-camera flash. On NO!
They’re going to comment on why I didn’t angle the camera down more and include more in the lower third of the photo.
Why does she keep shooting the same shot over and over again.
And I could go on and on with what my head says.
Truth be told I’ve been reading a book that David duChemin recommended titled, The Passionate Photographer. Ten Steps Toward Becoming Great by Steve Simon.
On p. 28, in trying to determine your artist statement, Simon writes, “If you haven’t come up with your own artist statement yet, take some time and find a quiet place for a brainstorming session with yourself. Jot down the common adjectives that describe why you like to shoot with your camera and why. These words will give you the skeleton of an artist statement, which will evolve over time.”
I am evolving over time and having fun with my camera. Learning how to have fun and not worry what others think has been a 21 year long journey.
Why do I keep shooting the girls? Because it’s fun. It makes me happy that they are happy posing, and later happy seeing themselves in the photo. Making others happy, makes me happy, is fun.
Why do I have such a love of photography? Because it’s fun for me.
I’m going to start listing how I shoot and treat photos with the hope that this repetitive noting will help me learn more.
This morning after Jen texted me the sunrise was exceptional (I think I got outside after the color she was seeing) I threw on some clothes and walked over to the 16th/17th hole lake. I shot using a tripod. I shoot photos in Raw rather than jpg and I shoot in manual mode using selected spot auto focus, when possible.
The 3 photos were shot using:
Canon EOS 5D Mark II
Canon Zoom Lens EF 16-35mm 1:2.8 L II USM
Not today, but I hope to start mentioning what caught my eye that caused me to click the shutter, something about my choice in composing, and the settings I choose. Again, I’d like to do this with the hope that I will learn more and be clear about my intent when taking a photo.
I never know until I wake whether there will be clouds in the sky. We’ve had cloudless skies for far too long. This morning’s continuing changing color and lighting made me quit hiking with my buddies. I climbed off trail, parked myself on a high point and spent the next 40 minutes in absolute heaven shooting the light as it changed with each passing minute. (Posted some of the landscapes Monday.)
Stacy, Ann and I had a blast with my son and his two friends in Joshua Tree yesterday and today. More photos to follow.