Less is more. It has become a rather trite expression, but that doesn’t make it any less true. There are times when creative works benefit by being constructed from only the bare essentials, no extraneous stuff. No distractions. Minimalism, or the use of stripped-down design elements, is about, as comedian Bob Newhart once declared, “saying the most with the least.” It’s not always necessary to fill the frame in order to make an interesting photograph. To be sure, minimalism is wide open to interpretive flourishes; macro, negative space, and abstract photography can also be minimalist photography. This a highly effective artistic strategy, beautifully demonstrated in the images in this post.
Indoor sports are in full swing this time of year. And while indoor sports like basketball are fun to watch, they can be frustrating to photograph, mainly due to poor lighting conditions. If you’ve been wondering how to get better shots of your kids’ basketball games (many of the ideas here will also apply to other indoor sports such as volleyball or gymnastics), the tips that follow should help get you on your way.
There really is no definitive list of elements that contribute to a great image; ask 10 experienced photographers and you’ll get nearly as many different opinions, which is great, because there’s no right or wrong when it comes to creativity. But if you listen to enough people with insight, you’ll begin to find some common themes about how to create great photos. Here are but five of those commonly recurring ideas.
“Winter is an etching, spring a watercolor, summer an oil painting and autumn a mosaic of them all,” wrote Stanley Horowitz. It is apparently the succinctness and vividness with which Horowitz describes autumn that has so resonated with people searching for seasonally appropriate quotes. Accordingly, the macro images that follow all embody, to one degree or another, the brilliant patchwork of seasons that is autumn.
Macro photography can be incredibly fun and rewarding. It can also be a challenge. That macro photography poses a challenge probably isn’t the sole factor that keeps most people away, however; it’s more likely to be the perceived high cost of admission along with not knowing if they are up to the challenge. Nobody wants to pour money into something they’re not good at. Of course there’s a more expensive side to macro photography, particularly when it comes to dedicated macro lenses, which are specially designed for high magnification and enhanced sharpness; but a macro lens isn’t the only path into close up photography. If you want to get your feet wet and not spend a lot of money, extension tubes might be the perfect solution for you.
With the arrival of new iPhone models and the improvements (however marginal) to the built-in camera, there is always a renewed interest in photography related apps that expand the usability of the native camera app or that are in some other way of use to photographers. There are lots of cool, practical, innovative, and fun apps out there to choose from — here are 5 that I find particularly worth your consideration.
Paths, trails, or whatever else one might call them, are curious things. In some cases, it’s quite obvious that a great many people (and animals) have walked along a particularly rugged route countless times over the years, while other pathways are deliberately placed, meticulously designed, and regularly manicured. No matter their origin or intended use, trails can be enchanting and inviting or they can fill prospective travelers with a sense of foreboding and mystery. And sometimes they can do all these things at once. From a photography perspective, trails have a lot to teach us about composition, framing, mood, and geometry. The images represent all that is intriguing and instructive about pathways. Enjoy.
Night time photography is surprisingly similar to daytime photography in the sense that it’s all about finding the right light. Obviously, things are considerably more challenging at night, and while it may appear your opportunities are severely limited once the sun dips below the horizon, you should think in terms of having a different set of opportunities rather than having fewer of them. If you’ve been looking to get started with night time photography, the tips below should be of some interest to you.
There are numerous factors that go into making eye-catching portraits. But an important (and sometimes overlooked) characteristic of a good portrait is that it is free of distractions. Any number of things could act as a distraction and it is easy to take care of the most obvious problems like stray hairs or blemishes. But be sure that you don’t neglect the background. Don’t worry if you don’t have a studio and backdrops for your portrait sessions; there are plenty of other ways to include — or exclude — a background so that it enhances rather than distracts from your image.
Are you into macro photography? Are you into eBooks? Good, because I think you’re going to love Introduction to Close-Up & Macro Photography by Ed Verosky. The eBook seeks to alleviate much of the anxiety surrounding macro photography by addressing the most pressing points of inquiry and providing the reader with a roadmap to producing wonderful macro images.