A Second Look

One of the advantages of digital photography is that it is easy to take a lot of pictures. One of the dangers of digital photography is that it is easy to take a lot of pictures; sometimes short-changing the thought that should go into a picture. I try to take pictures that catch what I am thinking/feeling about my subject. Unfortunately the result isn’t always what I was hoping for.

When I look at my pictures on my computer and large monitor I go through them several times. On my first pass I delete the photos that are below the technical standards I try to uphold. During the second pass, I do some cropping and minor adjustments to exposure, color, and contrast. I also do some deleting of images that don’t convey a sense of what I was trying to communicate with the photo. The third time through I export copies of pictures that I want to share to files for printing and/or posting on Word Press. Occasionally I have photos that I am not sure about or for which I have mixed feelings. I save those for a later “second look”; seeing if time makes me think differently – for better or worse – about the photo.

Today’s photo is one I recently shared on this photoblog. At the time I felt like sharing the picture (to show what can still be seen in early Winter in Michigan), even though I had mixed feelings about its lasting value. I printed an 8 x 10 of the photo. I set it where I would see it often and the photo grew on me and took on a life and beauty that I hadn’t felt earlier. The cropping, contrast, and simple beauty of weathered wood on a collapsing building was what I felt when taking the image and now I could see and feel it in the photo.

I guess what I hope to convey is to be slow to use the button for your camera’s shutter and slow to delete images that might yet connect with you. Maybe you might want to take a second look at some of your own work. I invite you to take a second look at today’s photograph – preferably on a large screen – and see how the image might speak to you today. I would love to hear your thoughts about what made this image a “keeper” for you or what might cause you to want to delete it.

2 Knots, 3 Nails

2 Knots, 3 Nails

Fasteners

These photos of various fasteners come from a one-day shoot last week. For people, buttons, zippers, and Velcro are important. For buildings it is more about cement, bolts, welds, and nails. The images below look at some rather beautiful fasteners. I welcome your thoughts, critiques, and musings.

Bolt and Mortar

Bolt and Mortar


Bolt and Wood

Bolt and Wood


Gutter Fasteners

Gutter Fasteners


Nailhead

Nailhead


Nailbottom

Nailbottom


Nail Bottom Up

Nail Bottom Up


Ring, Clip, & Rope

Ring, Clip, & Rope

Zoo Abstractions

If we think of photography as a continuum, with documentary photography (capturing the event, object, story) on one end and interpretative photography (portraying the feeling, essence, emotive qualities) on the other end, most photography falls somewhere between the two poles. That said, photographers often show a preference – slight or strong – for one of these two approaches to photography.

For me, art is all about reaching head and heart. In my photography I try to capture enough of the subject to set a context but also try to provide an emotive element. Today’s somewhat abstract images from the zoo lean much more toward the interpretative end of the continuum.

In the first two images I attempted to portray the intrinsic beauty of the peacock through rather abstract (interpretive) images of the bird’s feathers. The third image is about the colorful beauty of the rotting process in a fallen tree. The last image is of eyelashes from an African cow. The interpretation comes in capturing the swirls and the shadows in this tight shot.

Tail Feathers

Tail Feathers

Side Feathers

Side Feathers

Rotting Log

Rotting Log

Beauty is in the eye . . .

“Beauty is in the eye . . .”

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