Creating an image - the important things and a false start on composition - Part 3

November 20, 2012  •  Leave a Comment

As far as I am concerned, the photographer must see through to the final image from the very start of the process, even as he or she frames the content and sets the camera. 

The only important thing is the image, not the kind of camera, the number of pixels, the sharpness, the detail, white balance - only the image.

Before I go on about some of the principles and nuances, as I see them, of successful images I want to make two points both about the desirable end points.

1) Technical issues of composition and post-processing mean nothing unless the technical issues interfere with the viewer's appreciation of the image.

Good technical characteristics don't necessarily mean great images and great images may have 'good' technical characteristics - but who cares?.

Here is an image that is technically excellent but unfortunately forgettable – at least by me.  The color, detail, depth of field, framing are good to great. There is some confusion in my mind about which of the blossoms is the most important center of interest and, except for the stem, they don't relate to each other very much.

As documentation of a certain kind of orchid it is essentially perfectly done but, unless you love orchids, carries no emotional impact at all. 

All images used under the fair use clause of the US copyright law

Now look at these four images below.

No one, at least not I, should care about the technical issues except perhaps to wonder how they were done. It is interesting to puzzle out how they were done and note that each one violates at least a couple of the 'Rules'. Clearly the makers knew enough to use the way that people perceive images to make these specific images so great.

These images have marvelous impact - and that is the worthy goal – to produce images that make people gasp and forget about sharpness and color and composition as separate issues. In critique we may point out where the deficiencies are in technical terms but we should remember that the reason to correct the deficiencies is not so that the technical aspects are perfect but so that the technical efforts disappear as we look at great images.

All images used under the fair use clause of the US copyright law. These are not my images, although I wish they were. I will go back and cite the author and origin as I have a moment.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In order to achieve this kind of image, this impact, the photographer must know all the principles and know how to exercise them.

 

And 2) the only really important issue is if the viewers look at what you want them to look at and see something in it the way you do.

 

Next post, how to look at and deal with the centers of interest at this blog post -Managing-the-center-s-of-interest---part-4

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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