Beyond The Campfire was created to encourage readers to explore the great outdoors and to observe it close up. Get out and take a hike, go fishing or canoeing, or simply stretch out on a blanket under a summer sky...and take your camera along. We'll talk about combining outdoor activities with photography. We'll look at everything from improving your understanding of the basics of photography to more advanced techniques including things like how to see photographically and capturing the light. We'll explore the night sky, location shoots, using off camera speedlights along with nature and landscape. Grab your camera...strap on your hiking boots...and join me. I think you will enjoy the adventure.

F-4 Phantom

F-4 Phantom
F-4 Phantom

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Mechanically Good or Artistically Expressive

Your average photographer is often caught between understanding the high tech gadgetry built into their high dollar digital cameras and desiring to emulate the fine art photography they see being published today.  The good thing is the more they explore this, the more open they become to applying artistic concepts and techniques to their photography.

Photography is less about what the camera can mechanically do by itself, and more about understanding how you the photographer can use the camera as an artistic tool.  Compared to just a few years ago, the technology available today is indeed staggering and is constantly improving.  But, this fact alone cannot make those awe inspiring shots.  It still takes the photographer's skill and eye.

Great photographers are not unlike great musicians in that where great musicians go well beyond the simple mechanical reproduction of the notes and impart emotion and feeling into their music, great photographers go well beyond simply playing the photographic notes and are able to impart emotion and feeling into their much so, that when someone sees their work, they are able to project themselves into the moment and understand why that moment was so important to the photographer.

Modern digital cameras are powerful tools that allow you to generate a great deal of flexibility, creativity, and artistic expression into your vision of the world.  'Your vision'...those are the operative words.  Understanding the difference between how the camera sees light verse how we perceive light visually will transform your whole perspective about photography as a visual art.  Being able to do so requires a blending of technical savvy with artistic expression on your part...not necessarily simply depending on the technical ability of the camera to mechanically play the photographic notes.

Graduating from the realm of mechanical photographs, toward pursuing photography based on the dynamics of light requires a blending of the technical with the aesthetic...mechanical with the break away from simply always playing the photographic notes the way the camera tells you to...verses playing those notes based on your own vision and interpretation of the light's music.

Mechanically Good...

or...Artistically Expressive.

  Which one would you prefer?

1 comment:

Jenn said...

Artistically expressive, definitely!