Photography by Steve Lathan
Just as one trains for anything one must also train their eyes for seeing. I would also add ones heart into that equation ,for they really are connected. One of the biggest errors a photographer soon learns after getting home , to view the photos , is the picture doesn't often look like what they saw. Ansel Adams said one of the the most important aspects of photography is the position of the camera when the shutter went off. Trust me he would know ! After that it is setting up the camera for composition , depth of field and exposure. One of the greatest hinderances to photography is the green box on digital cameras. It often tends to create a machine gun type attitude of taking pictures where we just pray and spray . Meaning we never learn to see and never learn to capture what we saw. Seeing is the first component and then using the camera to capture it the second. In many ways the cell phone and the green box have created a multitude of picture takers but few photographers. So how do we learn to see and find our way of seeing ? By doing the hard work of looking. Look at others photos. Look at art gallery shows . Also subscribe to a good magazine and look at those pictures. Then look at what you want to photograph and begin a seeing relationship.
Light really is a beautiful gift and it reveals in different ways the beauty of what we see. The picture below works because of the very inviting angle into the creek bed. It also works because of the eye being drawn into the center and down into the picture. It also works because the light is laid out upon the center focal point and area in view . Then cast in very differing amounts throughout the image. Its really is a study in the beautiful and complex relationship of light and shadow. These are some of my feelings on photography and light. Ones I have learned over many years of seeing and still learning to see. I have never ever turned the switch off and find I simply view life as a series of still pictures as I go along.