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01-05-2014, 07:52 AM   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by Heinno Quote
Knowing that I do not know much about photography, I sometimes wonder why some trained photographers think some pictures are so great - to me how technically correct a picture is, is secondary to the "art" of the picture. I appropriate the skill and challenge that certain pictures would require to take, but if it is not nice to look at it defeats the purpose of the picture in a way - or am I missing the whole point?
I'm not quite certain as to what you are trying to say but then again, I just woke up and I am always a little groggy in the morning. With photography, it is good to have both technical correctness as well as artistry. Many times, one cannot function without the other. However, if you focus too much on the technical side of photography while your are out shooting, the artistic side may suffer and if you spend too much time focusing on the artistic aspects of a scene and do not pay much (or any at all) attention to the technical aspects of photography, you may end up producing an image that may be composed in a pleasing manner but may be considered crappy as far as the technical side goes. Before you try to develop the "artistic" side, you need to become proficient with the technical side of photography. Having all of the artistic skills in the world will not matter if you do not have technical skills whatsoever. Some photographers are more technical than they are artistic and other photographers are more artistic than they are technical. In order to become a good photographer (regardless of whether someone is more artistic or more technical), you must have established some skills on both sides of photography. It does not do good to have skills on one side while completely lacking in skills on the other side. And just so it's understood, when I say you, I am using that as a general term. I am not referring to you specifically.

01-05-2014, 09:43 AM   #17
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Art vs Technical

Hi

Yes, I know both the technical and artistic components are critical in photography, but what I am saying is that some pictures are technically perfect, (sharp, properly composed, exposed etc,) but yet is just a picture of a doorknob; got very little if any artistic appeal.

Another way of illustrating my point is, compare two identically taken pictures, that are both technically perfect, one is of a Ford Taurus and the other of a Lamborghini Diablo - which picture would get the second look?
01-05-2014, 10:27 AM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by Heinno Quote
Knowing that I do not know much about photography, I sometimes wonder why some trained photographers think some pictures are so great - to me how technically correct a picture is, is secondary to the "art" of the picture. I appropriate the skill and challenge that certain pictures would require to take, but if it is not nice to look at it defeats the purpose of the picture in a way - or am I missing the whole point?
It's not a science, but there are some generally well-regarded principles regarding composition in photography. Of course, some of the most exciting photographs are inconsistent with those principles, but the principles often work.

Again, depending on how you learn, there are some good books, courses and websites out there that can help you enhance how you see and what you decide to include / exclude when you make photographs. Camera clubs can also be helpful, as can the forum here where people post photos for critique. And of course there are exhibitions and photography books, too. But again, speaking about what worked for me, I found it helpful to take some formal instruction where I received critiques from instructors and/or my classmates and I supplemented that with reading some books.

I can recommend a couple of books by Bryan Peterson (available on Amazon) that are inexpensive and interesting as a way to start. His book Understanding Exposure is helpful both for what I called "category (1)" learning (technique relevant to all cameras - in particular exposure) and category (3) (learning to see) - as he emphasizes "creatively correct" exposure. (In other words, there are a number of permutations of aperture, shutter speed and ISO that produce the same neutral exposure but one or two combinations produce more creatively interesting photographs.)

He also has a book called the Art of Seeing, and it walks you through some building blocks for making more interesting photos - and it has some suggestions for exercises for you to practise what he's talking about.

Peterson also is the founder of an online photography school called the Perfect Picture School of Photography (ppsop.net), which offers mostly 4-week courses on different subjects, including a course based on his book The Art of Seeing and an 8-week course based on Understanding Exposure. I've taken half a dozen courses through this school (about $200 each for the 4-week courses). I like it because I get access to the ideas of a professional photographer who will present a class, give an assignment and then provide feedback to me on my photographs. I can also see the photos that other students in the class take and see the instructor's feedback.

Another teacher through PPSOP is Joe Baraban - I haven't taken any of his courses yet but I'm starting one next week. His classes also put a lot of emphasis on elements that go into making interesting compositions.
01-05-2014, 03:59 PM   #19
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Thanks, yes I will be reviewing some online tutorials and lessons for sure! I have a e-reader, so I will also download some of the recommended books. Thanks for all the help thus far!

01-05-2014, 08:18 PM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by Heinno Quote
Hi

Yes, I know both the technical and artistic components are critical in photography, but what I am saying is that some pictures are technically perfect, (sharp, properly composed, exposed etc,) but yet is just a picture of a doorknob; got very little if any artistic appeal.
Next weeks goal.....artistic pictures of doorknobs!

But in all seriousness, some of my funnest pictures have been of unconventional objects photographed from a unique vantage point that gives it that wow factor.

As a new photographer, 1 year in, the best advise that I can give is: 1) Avoid auto. Play around for a while in AV or TV mode (where you just need to worry about 1 of your settings - aperture or exposure). So much fun can be had playing with depth of focus.
2) Bring your camera with you as often as you can. Opportunities exist every day. Your camera sitting at home doesn't help.
3) Read. Here is a link I found early and loved. So much to know from these quick cheat sheets... https://imgur.com/gallery/pDC1X
01-05-2014, 11:00 PM   #21
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Doorknobs...

LOL!!!

Thanks for the advice - Yes, I think the auto button should be removed from all the non point-and-shoot cameras.

Thanks for the link... looking forward to learn
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