Saturday, December 4, 2010

Any Big Ape

As this cover indicates, any big ape can take a picture; but that doesn't mean they are really a photographer. As you may have guessed from this blog, or the hundred + photo articles I have written in the past, I also enjoy writing (although rarely have I ever been paid for it.)

Tradition says to write about what you know. I have in mind to write a story about a man and a woman, he being a photographer, she being the writer. Together they have to solve something (yet to be determined); and he will teach her how to visualize, while she teaches him to express his feelings in words. Expected to be of the romantic mystery type genre.

The reason I post this here is to get feedback on examples of how you teach others to visualize, or . . . how you would describe what you go through when you are looking for that perfect image. As I want this to go book length, I am looking for multiple perspectives and things that can be taught through out the story line.


  1. Having taught Photo-workshops before and after the advent of affordable digital cameras, there are three major areas that can affect your images for better or for worse. They seem to cross the film/digital barrier so I feel that makes them universal, right?

    First is Patience. I learned this in my youth, a gift from my father who was a man of many talents. "Patience," he once said to me, "is like honor; it is the gift that a man (or woman) gives to himself." He told me this in the tangled fastness of 'The Big Twist' which is a heavily timbered area in our mountains that only serious hunters could bag their game. The reason he hold me this is because I had just shot first buck that crossed a clearing some 200 yards away. As it turned out, there were three more massive bucks directly behind the one I took, making my 'Huge Four Point' look like a spike. If I would have waited, I could have harvested a larger deer AND my Father and Older Brother would most likely have taken the other two.
    In my later life I came to understand the idea of patience even better because when I had the will to wait just a little longer, I was still making photographs when others were holding their packed-up equipment and gaping in awe at the twilight sky.
    Confidence is another gift that we allow ourselves to feel and the more we feel the volcanic rush of Confidence the more it shows in our work. Most of us find it easy to make light of the ability it takes to craft Professional Images and that tends to dampen the fires that feed our confidence. There is enough competition out there, we don't need to beat ourselves down. Confidence also makes a difference when people are looking to hire you.
    The third attribute is actually the one that helps build and maintain the other two and it is Skill. I'm not talking about luck, I'm talking about skill; where your eyes see and compose automatically, your hands make camera adjustments without thought and you find yourself standing in the perfect spot with ALL the gear you need to make perfect images and you almost wonder how it happened.
    Patience, Confidence and Skill are Quiet attributes that one learns in the wild and deserted places of our planet or in the silence of a studio between the Big Shoots. When you take the time to reflect on what it is you are setting out to do and what you want to accomplish, THEN is when you find your rhythm and soon it adjusts itself to the surroundings you are shooting in. No amount of Photoshop or Plug-Ins will replace these three Needed abilities.