If you’ve missed it, the last few days have produced some amazing sunsets. I believe (and if someone with a atmospheric science background could confirm this) that it has to do with the angle the sun is setting at this time of year and the heavy clouds/atmosphere with the storms moving through the area. Whatever the how is, the end product is great to look at, and Erin came away with an amazing shot. Those deep oranges are hard to catch, and she was able to do it while not completely blacking out the foreground. The subtle orange reflections along the ground accent the silhouetted cityscape perfectly. She even was able to capture some reds, pinks, and blues a few minutes later. Simply mesmerizing.
A number of other contributors got shots of the sunset over the last two evenings. Those too are well worth a few minutes to check out.
Double exposure photographs can produce some fascinating and unpredictable results. But Erin’s shot above is aligned so well I’m suspicious that she planned this shot (which is possible, though quite difficult). In her shot, the viewer’s eye is drown to the statue centered in the picture, nicely framed in the black strip. Then the graffiti on both sides of the statue gives the photo a level of texture as well as more material for the viewer to explore. These two exposures, though very different, were well chosen to complement each other. It’s also a very complicated shot, with a great deal of material for the viewer to take in. Great work!
Reflection photos are always fascinating. Whether it’s a perfect mirror image or a distorted view, reflections make great subjects for photos. Let’s look at Erin’s shot above. This is half distorted and half mirror image, with the slashing puddle mirrors being broken by the ground. This composition forces the viewer to struggle to figure out what they’re looking at, and this struggle, oddly enough, makes the image rather compelling. Also, the color in the shot is wonderful; a full range of hues of oranges and blacks and reds. It takes a lot of effort to make pools of rain water in mud look interesting; Erin pulled it off nicely.
I did want to remind everyone that tomorrow is the 4th. I know, no reminder needed, but it does make a good lead into asking for your photos of the fireworks. I plan on doing a firework flashback on Monday the 8th, so please get your photos into our Flickr group by midnight on Sunday. And if you want to see the 2012 and 2011 flashbacks, well there you go.
A constant request I get from my friends is to “teach me to take photos like you do.” I find I have to stop myself from responding like George Costanza: “That’s like asking Picasso to teach me to paint like you paint.” The arrogance of the statement is only half of the issue; the other half is that it’s very hard to explain how someone visualizes a photograph. Many times I don’t even know what has drawn my eye to take the picture until I sort through my photos later.
Abstract photos are particularly difficult to explain. Take Erin’s photo above, a great abstract photo. What drew her eye to take this photo? If it was the peeling paint, she could have cropped it more like this. Was it the contrasting colors in the scene; the dull tones of the paint, with the muted reflected colors? It’s easy to say it was all of the above, but it could have been the shape of the window. Or perhaps even something I am missing. How does what explain finding and taking this picture?
And if the aim was to get something abstract, there are many types that could work; ceilings, portions of railings, shadows on sidewalks, even reflections of signs.
The ultimate answer is you shoot what catches your eye. It’s a carefully cultivated talent, that is unique to each person. I, or any photographer, could no more teach this skill than Picasso teach us to paint like he does. Each person just has to go out there and take photos the way they take photos.
courtesy of ekelly80
Sometimes you should look down; it can be just as important as looking up. To demonstrate, Erin does a great job of catching this small piece of the sidewalk. We’d probably just pass by the sight, and miss how the petals fill in the sections of the manhole, making the lines very distinct. With the petals fanning out like a solar wind, it really does look like a sidewalk sun. Of course, the filter used gives the picture a nice, pleasant, golden hue. An excellent shot however you look at it.
courtesy of ekelly80
This photo just made me smile. With Saint Paddy’s Day coming up next week, the sight of this perfectly made cupcake, and the green shoes, put me in the mood of the season. On an artistic level, this is a perspective that we all know well; who hasn’t taken a look at their yummy sweet just before devouring it? But Erin invested in some self-control and took the time to capture this perfect, Irish sight. May the luck of the Irish be with you all!