The Daily Snap – September 27
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Photography is easy when you are presented with ‘low hanging fruit’ such as a mountain lake with big peaks and theatrical light. On my photo tours, if the light is right I will take people to these kinds of iconic locations where the subject is obvious and the photography is easy. But what happens when the light is ‘drab’? You know, it’s a gray day, a bit dreary and you can’t even see the mountains. Then what?
During this last fall tour we had plenty of days where most photographers would just stay home. Dreary, gray and windy. As the photo location guide on these days I took people to waterfalls, canyons and forests. In these kinds of locations this ‘drab’ light shines to show detail and intimacy. But it is hard for many photographers to see the potential of a gray day. This is where craft won’t help you, but knowing ‘how to see’ will separate the technician from the artist. If you have difficulty learning to see maybe try the Creative Vision Masterclass we are offering in November.
At first the participants were stumped but after awhile they began to ‘look’ and then finally ‘see’. All around them were beautiful photos, they just had to remove their expectations and their visual blinders. By the end of the week most of them could more easily find evocative images in any light. The lesson of course, is that ‘there is no such thing as bad light’… ‘only bad photographers’ (er… I mean, photographers lacking practiced ‘seeing’). One of the reasons I have been posting Daily Snaps with my point-n-shoot camera (currently a Canon G11) is so I can keep ‘tuned’ into to seeing. The point-n-shoot daily shooting is the equivalent of a musician practicing scales. I recommend it for any photographer.