If you are like me you never really understood the beauty behind photography, or you use your camera to take fun pictures of friends and family, but not for art. I always realized that my camera could be used for so much more, but I for a long time I never got into taking photographs. After researching photography I found some ideas that have not only made photography more natural to me, but photography has become a special art form that I enjoy daily.
There are differences between photography and other forms of art. Some of the unique properties of photography are that the photographer “already has an existing object in front of your lens,” and photographs have a “capacity to render detail with precision” (Patterson, 2004). This is different from painting, sculpture, and all other forms of art because they picture is not a reproduction; it is an actual detailed copy of a moment. It can be improved upon by the skill and it of the photographer, but the whole image is already there.
Another exclusive property that photography has is the importance of timing because a picture relies solely on timing. I found this to be frustrating, challenging, and inspirational because a photographer has to be prepared to take the picture at the right time, and the photographer has to make all the decisions about the photograph before taking the photograph. As a photographer I feel this idea is important because it helps an artist to train their eyes and focus their ideas. It is also fun because sometimes you catch pictures of things that were unintended but natural.
The speed in which an exposure is made is also an important and distinct property of photography that I found a lot of fun to use. The idea that a photographer “stops the world” helped me to strive for better photographs (Patterson, 2004). Time lapse is a great example of ho the speed of an exposure can change a picture drastically. This method allows the camera lens to stay open for varied amounts of time, and the exposure will pick of motion and changes. This means that a picture of a butterfly flying taken with time lapse will show a blur of the butterfly as it passes. I enjoy using time lapse, and I recommend it to all.
Photography has also inspired me to try to perfect my reaction time to things in front of me. When practicing photography it is important to note that there is a “special connection with chance” that one must “hope for and prepare for” (Patterson, 2004). It is an amazing way to learn how to be alert and spontaneous, but it also helps you be prepared and cautious like a hunter on the prowl.
Photography relies directly on light for its “intensity, quality, hue and direction to organize the picture space” (Patterson, 2004). And the wrong or right lighting will make or break a picture. Many people have noticed that hen they take pictures sometimes they come out too dark or too bright. It is important to learn how to set up a picture in a way so that the light source is reflect on it in a beneficial way.
Photography may seem challenging or intimidating, but it is really a simple and enjoyable for of art that can be practiced by anyone with a camera. If you understand these simple ideas behinds photography you will have the basics you need to know to get out there and start taking pictures.
Patterson, F. (2004). Photography and the art of seeing. Toronto, Canada: Key Porter Books Limited.