The Art of Photography

Since the time of Stone Age Man, when images of animals and men hunting were first used to decorate the walls of the cave, we have been fascinated by the captured images. Although it was not until the invention of photography that truly made this fascination into an art that everyone could enjoy regardless of artistic ability. People all over the world take pictures of themselves, cities, pets and nature whether or not there is a particular circumstance or reason for doing so. But how much do we actually know when it comes to photography?

Photography has grown in recent years with the advent of cheap digital cameras and the easy accessibility of photographs due to digital photography and the low cost of both equipment and production of images.

We can leave it at that and talk a bit about black and white photography.

Black and White Photography

This is not simply presenting an image in black and white but also explores the contour and character, tone and texture, the aesthetic art and beauty of the subject. The two components of black and white photography that give depth and feeling to the image are the shadows and highlights, if we learn to use them then we can create great images.

Colour sometimes obscures the texture and form of subjects, it draws our attention the way flowers attract insects and birds, and ripe fruit catches your eye on a tree. Sometimes that’s what we want, but black and white can emphasize the texture of the subject.

The variety of ways that different colours convert to different greys means that you can have quite fine control over just what parts of your picture will be light and dark, in addition to lighting levels. The absence of light can be as important as the highlights. Good deep shadows can give a depth and solidity to an image. It allows us to separate out the effects of colour and luminosity, put another way black and white photography allows us to use colour more effectively.

Travel Photography

Travel Photography is not just about your holiday snaps. It is about capturing something of the feel, the emotion, the essence of a place. It is about telling the story of the people and the landscape; it captures the mood and the setting. But you don’t need expensive foreign holidays; travel photography can be your record of the next town or city or even neighbourhood. You can decide to choose an exciting local place to visit and capture interesting images. For example in Kenya, one may decide to capture the slums and the image would communicate a lot.

When taking contextual shots, one great way to do this is to think about what’s in the background behind the people you’re photographing. The thing is that you want something that’s not too distracting but adds to the context of the place you’re shooting in. Another technique for shooting shots of people that ignores the ‘contextual’ rule is to find a brightly lit position with a dark background. This can really help the face you’re shooting to pop out and capture the viewer’s attention.

Some of the best shots I’ve taken of people while travelling have been where I’ve tightly framed people’s faces. This means either getting in close to the person or having and using a good zoom lens.

Well, now i guess we can take good images :-) !!!!