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.

Prairie Sunrise

Prairie Sunrise
Prairie Sunrise

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Stretch Your Imagination...Photographically

Just imagine some of the most incredible photographs you've ever seen. They may reside inside a National Geographic or some other nature magazine. They may reside inside a coffee table book about exotic locations. They may hang on a wall or adorn an office space, or maybe float around on a website. Now...imagine this. You took those photo's.

You're probably thinking ...yeah right...but, I'm serious...why not you? There are no reasons why you can't take those same kind of awe inspiring images. It's just a matter of believing you can do it and taking the steps to learn how. Certainly fundamentals come into play. Taking great photos does require a solid understanding of the basics, but that's the least important takes more than that. It takes a sense of awareness of what makes a great photograph, and all great photographs begin with Light.

Photography is 90% seeing and 10% photographing. Unfortunately most people never move past the 10% part. They seem to flounder on high center trying to figure out how to take a mechanical picture and never move beyond that aspect and miss out on learning about the other 90% of the essentials of photography.

One thing I've learned over the years about photography is that imagination is more valuable than technical skill. Oh, understanding the technical stuff is important, but it's not everything. What really is important is being able to recognize that photographic see beyond the ordinary to observe the extraordinary. Applying technical elements to a potential photographic moment matters little if you're not looking at the right moment. Stretching your imagination will carry your photography much further than spending a lot of effort trying to figure out the magic camera settings formula. Contrary to popular belief, there are no magic formulas for camera settings, just an understanding of how the camera sees and reacts to light, then using that understanding in imaginative ways.

I know a lot of photographers...some of them are really good...many are moving on up...some are stuck in the dark ages photographically. They just can't seem to jump start their imaginations vividly enough to move forward. That is unfortunate, because all of them are quite capable of taking amazing photographs, but allow preconceived misconceptions to hold them back.

Coming up in another few weeks, we're still working out the details, I'll be teaching another photography workshop that will spend a lot of time exploring this idea of jump starting your imagination photographically. We'll talk about the basics of course, but those basics are simply the foundation from which the best part of photography springs from. The intent is to get the participants to start thinking beyond the obvious and to look at the world from a different perspective, to give up the notion of always photographing the same ole things the same ole ways. We'll encourage them to step outside of their comfort zones and to look at photography from the aspect of combining a measure of technical skill with Stretching their Imaginations. It should be fun.


1 comment:

Heather Nelsen said...

Love your blog! And love the title too! Beautiful pictures- makes me wanna travel! :) stopping by to say hello and am now following! Have a great week!