Monday, October 22, 2012
Feeling Your Way to Great Photography
Great photography is more than just taking pretty pictures. It's more than snapshots of your last vacation. Sure, they can be pretty and in some exotic location. But really effective photography has that extra element. It tells a story. It portrays emotion. It embodies life, and living. You know those photos when you see them. They reach out and capture your imagination. They whisk you away to another land, another time, or another life. They have that certain feeling. But how is it some photos are snapshots and others ethereal? How can a static picture emote feeling to the viewer? The answer lies within the eye of the artist. The artist has not just the tools and technical knowledge but the motivation and the passion to convey that feeling. Start first by calling yourself an artist. Getting yourself in that mindset is the only way to get where you want to go. Don't worry about what other people think about your art. They will be subjective and judgmental. While people are deciding whether or not they like it, make more art, as Andy Warhol would say. There is nothing you can do to make them like it. Find your creative muse. Shakespeare wasn't always inspired to write brilliant sonnets. His passion lied with women, and was motivated to write out of his passion for them. Wear your heart on your sleeve. Put yourself out there to be seen. Choose a subject. Let it be your muse. It could be a flower, or the sun, or a colorful cloud. Whatever it is, it has to mean something to you. See it. Feel like doing something with it. Create some tension. Juxtapose it. Expose it or leave it mysterious. Make bold choices. Get close to the ground. Use leading lines into the photo. Plan it. Stalk it. Visualize it. What will it look like in different light? Will it look different with a long exposure? Whatever you do with your subject experiment with it. It will be clear to your audience that feeling you had.