Happy to be taking Kat's latest class "Journey of Inspiration". I mean, who doesn't want to be inspired? Hopefully I will become or will find or will learn or will something in the inspiration department. This is the 3rd class of Kat's I've taken so I have little doubt that inspiration is right around the corner. If you haven't checked out or joined in one of Kat's classes, I highly recommend them.
Our first challenge was thinking about "solving problems". Hmmmm. Photography is what I do to get away from dealing with problems. My work as a realtor of late seems to be all about problems: angry sellers, stressed out buyers, moldy basements, foreclosures, negotiations, too many sellers not enough buyers, unsettled consumers worried about the economy, etc, etc, etc. I thought I used photography to escape all that. Hmmmmm. Frankly; I'm sick of problems.
None the less, it's Kat. And Kat knows best, so onward.
Sand Castle (SOOC)
This is a really, really early photo of mine. I remember the day I took it. It was the first time I'd built a drip castle in over 35 years. It was taken with my point and shoot camera within the first month of my photo taking career.
After the fun of creating the castle (to fulfill the prompt word "drizzle") I was ready to photograph. The light was getting strong, but it was still mid morning. I could sense that being on one side or the other (ha, ha, ha....it's a ROUND castle....doh) would offer better light, but I couldn't figure out which angle would be best. I went around several times, shooting from one side then the other. When I got home, one of the images "won" and the others went into the scrap pile. Deleted.
...and thousands of....
photos later, I think I may have a pretty good handle on light (not that I don't have plenty more to learn). I think the immediate feed back of a digital camera has been the teacher; the problem solver. If you visit my blog often enough you know of my love affair with light. It is what I think of as my biggest inspiration. I'm trying to accept new paramours into my line up. If they were to stand in beautiful golden hour light, I'd be more likely to let them into my heart. (Maybe there are more problems here than I originally thought.)
Perhaps I am too loyal or faithful. Too drawn in. A slave to light's charms. But I think I have learned to walk around it, find the color, shadow, angle, and result that I'm looking for. To see it, and know that is what I want. Practice, practice, practice. That too is how you get to Carnegie Hall.
Ok, yippee for me. I've worked it out. Now on to more problems. Geez....this is just like real estate. Blech.
When I first read Kat's lesson, immediately what popped into my head was exactly what she'd sited for example; high-contrast light situations. It feels like cheating to say that too is my struggle du jour, but it is. Sometimes I can hear myself saying "I want that shot....but I don't know how to get it."
I mean, yuck, yuck, yuck and yuck.
After PS help I did end with something passable, but not as good a shot as I'd hoped for.
River Runs Through It
I lost the impact of the rushing water and the clarity is suspect. Rats. More practice, practice, practice.
Lately, some high contrast shots have been getting better. Yay.
In the Air
And some things are still experimentations gone awry.
Rooftops and Trees-aka Photoshop hell
This beautiful rotunda room at Quincy Market in Boston was so inspiring, but I couldn't seem to capture what I wanted. In my defense, my best friend called while I was snapping pics, and talking on your cell and snapping shots at the same time-bad mix. I did get some nice framed shots, which was primarily what was on my mind that day in that space.
I think when struggling with a problem, it's good to remember the many things you do do correctly while you kick yourself and piss and moan that you can't get the other shots you'd hoped for. Truth is....I took over 400 shots that day in Boston and have lots of winners. And....since I didn't capture the mixed lighting scenario in the rotunda, I guess I'll have to go back another time and try again. Road trip!!
I think two things helped me learn to better capture light....practice, practice, practice and relying on my camera to give me feedback. This can also help in high contrast situations. My camera can be a teacher. I am already getting better at assessing while I'm on site, checking the display, looking for places where the image is blown out. I know that dark areas can be brought up, but blown out spots can't be recovered. I also need to keep working with PS and become better at editing my photos. Certainly these tools-and dedicated practice-will give me the results needed soon enough. Then I can save problems for my yucky old day job.
Thanks for stopping by to share in my learning musings. Hope your problems will stay at bay.