Sunday, June 1, 2008

Taking Great Pictures

The great photographer Dorothy Lange said, “The camera is an instrument that teaches people how to see without a camera.” When you are using your camera, you are on the lookout for things that are unique or beautiful. Taking pictures helps you slow down to appreciate what is around you. The more photographs you take, the better you get at identifying what is worth looking at an extra time and what is worth recording. Photography allows you to see the world in a whole new way. Becoming more aware of your environment helps you form informed opinions about the things you see. Would you like to share your own vision of the world with others? Pick up a camera, learn some basic rules of photography, take lots and lots of pictures, and show the world what you’ve got!

People take photographs to remember an event, to record something beautiful, to show something that affected them emotionally, and to share a moment with others. Everyone has a unique point of view. If you tell a group to photograph a particular thing in front of them, such as a flower, no two people in that group will come up with the same picture. Photography helps us express our individuality. It is a way to tell the world who we are and to present our points of view. Photography and gardening should go hand-in-hand. Record your handiwork for others to see and use the opportunity to further express your gardening sensibilities.

Anyone can pick up a camera and shoot photos. It is easy in that respect. But, as with any art, the key to good images is to have a vision and to use basic techniques to enhance your statement. You may see the world’s most beautiful sunset, but if you do not know how to properly capture the light and the colors you can not share that beauty with viewers of your picture. There are three basic rules for good photography and two additional rules for becoming a great artist.

  1. Find a good subject
  2. Set up a good composition
  3. Use light to highlight your subject and composition
  4. Study the art work of others
  5. Show your photographs to other people
Dorothea Lange helped generations of people to see the world around them in a whole new way. As your photography skills progress, you’ll be surprised at the new perspective of the world that you have. You will start noticing good photo opportunities even when you do not have a camera in hand. You will see your flowers in a whole new way. You'll notice more little creatures and other fine incidentals. On a larger scale, you will develop a greater appreciate for things in your daily life such as people’s expressions, architecture, the weather, your cat.. Let your camera guide you and you too will see your world (and your garden) a little differently.


Ken said...

Great post. I started a Photograph a Day on my blog to help me slow down and enjoy the world around. It also helps me to improve my photography and gives me a new challenge on a daily basis. If you have time please stop by

Amy said...

I've had a lifelong interest in photography, probably because my father liked to take pictures and even had his own dark room when I was little. I didn't really get "into" it though until we got a decent digital camera. That opened up a whole world for me - being able to experiment all I wanted without worrying about the cost of developing film was HUGE.

I didn't REALLY get into photography until I started my garden blog in February this year. That's when I really fell in love. When I'm out with my camera the stress, worry, and sometimes even pain just melt away and I'm totally focused on what I'm doing, loving every minute of it. I often think that I would love to take a photography class someday, but for now I'm learning a lot from other bloggers.