As I review and often delete old files from my desktop and external hard drives. I can’t help but lament over mistakes I made when I started out. Whether it be bad lighting, busy backgrounds or blemishes. I often wish I had known more. Whereas in the past. I didn’t spend much time in post production and my studio lighting was often flat. Through listening to better photographers and putting their teachings to practise. My skills improved and I gained confidence. These days, my enjoyment of post production has grown to where I’m beginning to notice that shooting and editing play on an evener keel. Still, I often find myself wishing I could get another chance to capture the beauty and soul of many of the people I met along the way.
Out and About
Earlier this weekend, we took a short drive to a fairly local Virginia market where we enjoyed the food, cool weather, and even got to talking to some of the locals. I took this image while waiting in an alley while my wife visited a nearby bakery. With the mid day sky at it’s brightest, I made sure to lower my iso and kick up my aperture. When I got home I played around with the contrast, amongst other tools, to get what I wanted. Below are the results.
As exhausted as I might be from our move back to the east coast, my mind can’t help but think of photographing and documenting my new surroundings. A new town or city will do that, and both Washington DC and Virginia offer many visual opportunities. And as we move from two nights of hotels in both Seattle and DC to our temporary Amazon apartments, I couldn’t help but grab my camera and 50mm lens to experiment with some of the light and shadows in our apartment and spooky hallway.
Capturing your vision
I have a habit of overthinking. When I get something in my head or get passionate for something, I go all in. Being that I’ve suddenly decided I wanted to get back to taking pictures, (Not that I ever really stopped.) I’ve been spending a lot of time watching videos about composition, lighting and long exposures. So, as I lay in bed last night, I began to think of that box of matches we have. The ones we use to light candles when our farts are particularly foul. There I was, unable to sleep because I couldn’t stop thinking about how I wanted to capture those matches. So, after I got up this morning, showered and enjoyed my first cup of coffee, I got to work. After a few, less than satisfactory attempts, I finally captured the matches as I had imagined as I lie awake the night before.
Adding Color to my Concert Photos
I’ve shot countless shows for various media outlets over the years. I absolutely love being in front of the stage trying to capture that note, emotion or moment. As in my studio work I almost exclusively shoot B&W. It’s my personal choice. Working in that trade I’ve tried to learn from the best while applying my own style. I am constantly checking in on work on various websites and music media outlets. I have to shake my head when I see a lot of the work that’s published and considered professional. I’ve seen more than my share of burnt out, unfocused, blurry and over exposed images. Most of which are in the form of color. I never want to disrespect any one’s work or approach and I fully understand the challenge of working with certain lighting issues including “No Flash” policies. A lot of what I’ve seen has scared me away from shooting color at shows.
Well, I’ve grown some cojones along the way and forced my self to see what I was missing. I’ve incorporated color into my show images and though I’ve found some challenges along the way, there was nothing that a little adjusting of the flash, your vantage point or a little post production won’t cure. “Watch out for those hot spots.” I still scratch my head when I see these images and wonder, sometimes aloud, how this is accepted and why an editor would even approve it for copy. That instruction book that came with your camera goes a long way when learning your cameras functions.