I, like many, am first drawn to a particular landscape due to the bigger picture. It is the grand vista that grabs my attention, but then as I spend a bit of time there it is the smaller parts that hold my attention. There are many parts to the big picture and we will explore this in more detail in the weeks to come.
In this image I could have captured the grand scene with the fence in the foreground, or I could have focused on the fence itself. Instead it was one little rusty barb that caught my eye. It has stood out in the weather for many years with a single job – separating two paddocks. It may have seen action against a raging 1500kg bull, or maybe it has just survived the fiercest storms the state has seen over the last 50 years. What ever its story might be, it stands as a very small part of a very big landscape.
I’m excited! Every year I learn more, discover more, and do more. this year is shaping up to be a great one.
Already this year my 7 year old son is taking a real interest in photography, and we have had a few little photowalks so that he can learn how to handle a camera. I can tell you now, you will learn a lot about the world around you with a 7 year old boy in tow. I can not wait to see how he grows with the camera over the next 12 months.
However, this months photo!!
What would photography be without light? I remember reading a lot last year about various ways to light your photos. One thing that really seemed to hit home is this:
The best light in the world is free!
Sunlight, day light, natural light, afternoon light, golden hour light, call it what you like – more and more people seem to be advocating for this light rather than artificial light. Have a look round any photo sharing site and you’ll see that people are loving the free light from above.
This photo uses natural light – Moon Light. There is some artificial light from the lights around the gardens, but primarily it is light reflected off the moon from the sun.
We were away for the weekend with the in-laws. It was nearly mid-night, and the family had all gone to bed. As I sat looking over the water from our unit I thought that the clouds were almost glowing in the near full moon, so I grabbed the camera to see what would result in a photograph. As soon as I saw the preview I was amazed at the detail and the amount of light that the moon produced (This was a 78 second exposure). The garden lights threw a bit of light into the scene, which I think helped to frame the water. They also add a warmth to image that I really like.
So I encourage you try and experiment this year with the best light in the world – it’s free!!
The photo for this months ‘Photo of the Month’ is an old one – and not really an indication of the work I currently produce. It is however one that really inspires me, and gives a lot of meaning to the work that I do.
This month as we head toward Christmas, I want to inspire you to think about family, friends, and anyone else that has helped you to be the person that you are today. How do you remember them when you can not be with them? A photo is a powerful thing to help share those moments when we can not be with those we love, and to remember those we can not be with at Christmas. We have amazing technology now, and social media that allows us to send photos in an instant to those we love, and then they often respond with photos in return. We treasure these and ‘like’ them and in an instant share them with others so that everyone we know will see how much these people mean to us. We may never realise how valuable these photos are to some that we share them with. Imagine being alone and stuck half a world away from family at Christmas. Imagine how great it would feel to see photos pop up in your social media feeds so you can see what is happening. I know I would feel a little less alone, and a little closer to home – but that might just be me!!
So what about this months photo. This photo is one that I shot over 10 years ago. It is my Mum, and it was her birthday. She passed away a few months later, after a long struggle with cancer. This is my favourite photo I have of her – and as we approach Christmas I look at it and think about what she would be doing if she were still here with us. I think about the things she did for me, and how much she would have loved this time of year with all the grandkids (Sadly she never got to meet her grandkids). Each year I make a traditional Fruit Cake, and Christmas Pudding because that is what Mum always did at Christmas. Photos and food – what a great combination!
I will take quite a few photos at Christmas, and share a few with friends and family. Some may be nothing more than snap shots – but they are precious to me. They are my memories captured. Something I can go back to time and time again. So this Christmas make the effort to photograph those you love. Share your photos with those you love. Remember those you love!!!
Bongaree Jetty, Bribie Island.
Welcome to ‘Photo of the Month’
I have a young family, and the day this photograph was taken was a day when we thought that we would do something a bit different with the kids for dinner. We headed over to Bribie Island, which is a short drive for us (It is about a 45-60 minute drive north of Brisbane, Queensland – Australia) We got some take away, parked the car here at the waters edge, and huddled in the back to eat. It was great and the kids loved it, especially when it started to rain.
Because this was family time and not photographic time (AKA: My Time), I didn’t want to take a full kit of photographic gear and spend all my time capturing the great scene that was right there in front of me. I had the camera with one lens attached. No tripod – as I thought that I would give the cameras ISO settings a run for their money. Despite being fairly dark I intentionally shot hand held. It worked!!!
I had not planned to get a shot as good as this. My plan was to shoot a few shots hand held at different ISO settings to get an idea of what the camera was able to do. It was a fairly new camera at this stage so I was testing and learning its abilities and limitations.
It is not a technically great photograph, but it was never meant to be. However it is a special photograph to me, because of the experience that I had in capturing it – and that is what is important for any photo that we take. It is not just a photo but a whole experience, from choosing the gear to take, the people that travel with you, and the vision you have when you set out. I hope you might enjoy this photo – as I really enjoyed capturing it.