little green footballs

What Makes a Good Photograph of a Mere Picture ? Sorting Out 5

Sat, Jan 6, 2018 at 11:02:05 am

William has challenged us to put up 5 favorite photos from 2017. But I hit a roadblock, which to choose? And as a film guy that embraced digital for deep dives of practice, I thought to review what expectations we have, why one image is just "okay you were there" and another more, maybe sometimes far more appealing. Hopefully without overexposing the personal side of how I approach photography.

Early in the year we got word of huge surf at Jalama beach. So off we went. In the end it was tough because huge waves but all foamy and nothing in the water of give scale. But for Black and White I like this one.

Sometimes success is right near home. I liked this shot from my yard, must admit a lot of post process here.

Another view the same morning.

One afternoon I settled in for a mountain range sunset. Sunsets are a cliche. Overdone, practically everywhere. True, but they are also very difficult to elevate and then execute. Harsh teachers. The rule here was no layers, just crop, contrast, and color. The other thing was don't do a pure sunset. Find some foreground.

First the "what the eye sees" when I roll up and pick my spot to settle in on. Checklist done.

Since the sky was so bright, I dial down but try to avoid losing all the color of the bush. Fill flash? Nope. Oh man that's just awful. Recompose a bit.

So, obviously kill the flash.

But still a bit of further adjustment...

And that's one of my personal faves from 2017. Favorite because it taught me something. Taught me to try light painting, but that would be up the road. Again, first the eyeball view, although the moon does not shine that hard, that's a result of exposing for the cityscape.

In the end I got this, my next fave on the year, probably my pick for #1.

What happened earlier, inspired me for later. It's a process.