Progress – One Year On

Although I have been taking photos on and off for many years, I have only taken it seriously for the past twelve months. Photography improved the quality of my life last year, it got me to go outside when I was too scared to live, and afraid to go outside of my front door. Because of the impact it had upon me I made a decision to put the effort in to improving my photography.

I realised that I had to have a focus so that I could develop, and as I have an interest in sociology I set myself some sociological themes. Some of these have turned into projects that are ongoing, and others I have turned into photo essays. Others I have put to the side for now.

I needed to create a bit more space on my computer so I have gone back through my photography from the past year, and have deleted many of the photos, photos that I saved in two different formats and others that I will not make use of.

The process has given me the opportunity to review how my photography has improved, and I feel really grateful that I have done this. It is quite obvious that my technical abilities have improved, but I can also see how I have begun to take photos that I want to take. Even if I havent made the quality that I want to, or that don’t tell the story that I like (and this is most of my photography), I am heading the right direction. There are themes that have become clearer, and other ideas that I had, that I currently have no plans to develop although I may do so in the future.

The turning point has been decided to take Foundations in Photography with The Open College of the Arts. Yes my photographic techniques have improved, but more importantly to me, my creativity and ideas are improving. With the encouragement of my peers, and through viewing the work of them and other OCA students, and photographers that I follow on WordPress, my progress is improving.

Am I where I want to be with my photography? No, not by a long shot. That is a good thing, I have a lot to learn and the willingness to learn.

Progress is being made.

Exercise 2.1 Test Photos

I’ve gone out today with my camera phone, to begin exploring the theme of taking photos, on a neutral background. The aim is to remove all identity of the place (context), so that the subject remains as the only focus. Does this draw the eye into the subject detail.

The wind was too strong to do this without an assistant today. I’ll go back out tomorrow and ask a member of the public to help me. However I took some photos trying to minimise the background, and this will at least give me a comparison for when I successfully complete the exercise.

20170913_182118I tried to use the wall as a background. But I didn’t put my phone onto manual, so I have lost the detail with the light.

20170913_182343Too much background distracts from the detail. I may take this into Lightroom tomorrow and see if I can delete the background and enhance the detail, which is there.

20170913_153804This is the better photo. I will go back with my Vello extension tubes and white paper and see what I come back with.

20170913_154033This has the potential to make a good photo. A bit of sellotape to move the background rosehip, string to move some of the foreground, Vello extension tubes for a macro shot with the natural green background. The background will have no detail as the vello ensure an incredibly narrow depth of field.

20170913_160948A natural background that’s too distracting. I will use some of my macro photography for the exercise, because good macro photos with natural backgrounds can be highly effective.