Saturday, February 27, 2016

Artistic Eye | Photography

I never thought of myself artistic when it came to photography. I didn't have that "natural eye"--at least not when I saw others' photographs. I would look at a tree and say, " it's a tree..." My brother would look at a tree, take one picture (ONE!) and I would be dumbfounded. It was a piece of art.

Fast forward a few years. I did photography as a hobby, then people actually began to hire me. And one of the things they mentioned? I had a good "eye." (Wait. When did this happen?)

Maybe I did have it naturally, but I just needed to practice, practice, practice.

When I first started photography, using my brother's digital camera, I would snap twenty pictures of the same object, with almost the same angle. Did that really give me much practice? Since I was using auto-focus, no it didn't.

One photographer suggested experimenting with three different angles on a subject (keeping the subject in the same pose). I didn't know this when I was practicing, but on my own, I began narrowing my picture-taking to only 2-3 shots of the same angle. You know what? It made a difference! As I practiced, I learned what worked and what didn't--when to take the picture and when to avoid pressing that button.

Here are a couple of angles from the same subject. Taken in St. Charles, MO, in 2011.

Photographers - What tips have helped your "photography eye?"

Photographers-in-training - What do you plan on practicing this week with photography?

If you have a photography blog, comment with the link below and I'll visit! :)


Beau Roberts said...

One thing that has helped my eye is, just do the unexpected. As you said about a tree--what would it look like if I took a picture going up the trunk? What if I off centered it and took it at sunset? There are endless possibilities!
And another thing... Never have the mindset,"I'll fit it in Photoshop later..." Ban yourself from photoshop! Just play with the camera! You'll be surprised what you will learn! :-)

Susannah Joy said...

I think you do amazing photography!!!

I do have a blog where i dabble in photography if you would like to look:

I could definatly use some pointers!

Amanda T. said...

@ Beau - total yes on the Photoshop. It can be an enhancer...but it's not your camera. :)

@ Susanna Joy - thank you so much! :) I'm looking at your blog now! :)

Kimberly Snyder said...

I agree with Beau on the Photoshop tip! Don't ever think of some computer application as a crutch. This is why I use Lightroom almost exclusively- LR enhances what you already have on the camera, whereas PS is largely for altering the photo itself.

Another thing, I look for odd quantities and breaks in patterns. A row of five bicycles where all are yellow except #4 is basically the ideal shot!

I don't publish my pictures on my blog, but every so often a friend steals a picture off of my Facebook for use on their blog! How dare they?! But yes. I really enjoy photography, and I appreciate this post! Maybe you could help us with pointers on watermarks? ;)

-Kimberly, of

Amanda T. said...

@ Kimberly,

I really, really like LightRoom. In fact, that's pretty much all I use (unless I'm doing graphics design--in which case I'll use Photoshop Elements).

Good tip! Very true! And a lot of it is one thing you said: "LOOK." :)

And thanks for giving me an idea for a future post, Kimberly! Be looking for one with watermarks in the nearish future.


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