Finally…We Can All Slow Down
Happy New Year!
I’m getting the usual questions about the cameras people got for Christmas. How to set the dials for exposure…why they can’t get that cute photo of their cat on the couch…why it’s so hard to capture their dog running… why it’s so hard to capture action period, even with a new whoop-tee-do camera.
Well it doesn’t start with the camera. It starts with slowing down. That’s hard to do right after the holidays. Our bodies and minds are still on overdrive…we’ve been rushing around since before Thanksgiving so it takes a bit of time to pull the gears back.
Start by taking a day to play with your camera when you can relax. You might even want to start this process by viewing some killer photographs. I like to do this with Ansel Adams’ work. Even though he didn’t photograph animals in action, his art is so insightful, so calm and extraordinarily peaceful that it helps me to be that way too.
When Ansel taught photography, he often told his students that of the millions of pictures he’d taken of the natural world, only those that were intensely felt at the moment of exposure would survive the test of time. He knew that beyond basic technique, great pictures are a combination of what the eye sees and the photographer feels inside. He knew that to be great you must have both.
So slow down and see if you can spend January in a reflective mode just looking at your animal subjects and thinking about the next great photo you plan to make. The planning is an integral part of the creative process. No worries…the concept for a great picture will come if you relax and open yourself to the process of discovery.