ESRAmagazine

Aiming for the Perfect Photo

Pictures and text by Susan Meyer

Hundreds of millions of photographs are shared daily on social media, regardless of their content or quality. A good image is achieved by way more than just "pointing and shooting". The possibilities are endless, regardless of the type of camera used.

With my camera ready, mounted on the tripod, I'm taking in the beautiful scene spread out in front of me.

Question time and decision time!

What made me stop at this particular field? What is it that I want to capture? Will it work best with a wide angle lens or with a zoom lens.

I decide on a wide angle lens so that the field, the road, the furrows, the trees and mountains in the distance, as well as some sky can be seen. I have chosen full depth of field so that everything in the picture is in focus.

The curves, the lines, the colours are what drew me to the spot, so I decide to concentrate on them. That means changing from a wide angle lens to a zoom lens in order to focus on a specific part of the scenery. 

I haven't moved very much, yet I now have pictures of the same scene that look rather different. One of the pictures above projects the feeling of a huge field with trees in the distance. I've chosen not to include any sky which means that the field may carry on forever. The second picture is an abstract, composed using the lines, repetitive shapes and colours that drew my attention in the first place.

For each image I had to decide what I wanted the picture to be. When I knew that, I could choose the lens, choose the aperture, choose a tripod height and angle for the shot. Once composed I decided whether to change the camera's average exposure reading. 

The positioning of the subject also needs to be considered. Below are two pictures of the same tree. The composition is very similar although the tree is differently placed. In the first picture I've included a band of sky and very little foreground. In the second picture a band of flowers is included below the tree and the sky has disappeared completely.

The tree attracts attention because of its round shape and its placement in the picture space. 

A horizontal picture will be very different to a vertical one. Depth of field and exposure are important for creating atmosphere and for evoking an emotional response to an image.

These are some of the things to be considered when making pictures.

For a picture to be great, rather than good, it needs to be "made" and not "taken". It requires time, thought and planning. Photography can be a very satisfying, enjoyable and even exciting pastime. It can be a visual voyage of discovery. 

Photographs © Susan Meyer (Menashe Hills, Israel)
Susan Meyer This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 054-547-5166 

 

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Tuesday, 19 January 2021

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