View from the office

Posted on August 21, 2010 by Tim 1 Comment

Regular visitors to this site may have opined the lack of scenic or landscape photography. To them firstly I must say, relax – there’s only four of you out there. Secondly, This site has only been up a week.

Kidding aside, scenic photography is not really my thing. I would like it to be. Or at least be better at it. You see, many people think that great images come from great cameras. Now, these newer feature rich cameras certainly do improve many facets of image capture. However, they can’t make great pictures. That comes from skill, lighting, composition, luck, and knowing when and how to break the ‘rules’. I think I have the skills to take decent scenic photos. But I don’t always have the eye for it. What many people may not realize is that photography takes practice. And more practice. One should be constantly shooting and evaluating their work. Over time the mechanics and the thought process become easier and then automatic. But if you don’t constantly shoot or take long breaks from shooting then you lose those skills. That’s what scenic photography is for me. I look at a pretty scene but I can’t see a good picture. I have the technical skills to make something happen but not the mental skills to create the art. I’ll squint, change lenses, change positions, look through the viewfinder, even make some clicks. But in the end I am usually disappointed. Most of the time I know the photo is going to suck before I even press the shutter. My editor skills are sharp while my artistic abilities are not. So that’s where this site is supposed to help. I plan on adding a regular blog theme titled ‘View from the Office’. I plan on forcing myself to take street scene shots and city related landscape images while I’m out and about. I know most of them will suck. But I don’t mind sharing these failures. I’ll likely discuss why they don’t work so those unfamiliar with the photographic process may learn something and hopefully I’ll get better. Or at least sharpen some skills. Don’t worry – the bulk of this site will still be about wildlife photography, especially about herps. I even have a couple upcoming blog entries this week on the subject.

So, above is the first crappy photo. It is simply a snapshot. No thought went into it. The lighting sucked – in fact it’s hard to tell this was taken in August. But that is our weather right now. Crappy and foggy. There is no interesting subject. It is simply a view of streets. With a few filter effects thrown in. I took it because I needed to take an image to kick off this theme. So last night that’s where I was and what I was presented with.

One comment

  • Jim Fitchlee says:

    Dear Mr. Paine,

    Your comments are very correct in every fashion. In the ‘old days’, all the magic happened in the dark room when the view finder “failed”. Patience is a virtue, multiply that by 100 when it pertains to photography. Your wildlife photos are very good, scenic and people are the most difficult, however. Keep up the good work and best of luck.


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