There is something mystical about seeing! Oh, and I talk to rocks. Doesn't everyone? I talk to squirrels and my GPS, too (she of the melodious and patient voice named Melody and before Daphne passed she was beginning to wonder what was up). The rocks don't usually talk back but Melody does.St3v3M wrote: ↑Thu Jan 04, 2018 8:19 pmI like to think Galen was out climbing, saw a pretty cloud, grabbed the nearest camera and snapped away. It was only when he got home he realized he forgot to check his metering and was so thankful the cloud wasn't blown out he printed it and called it a day. Knowing too many People Of The Dirt I know this isn't true though and he took his time, gave it his best and tried to capture the moment as much as he tried to show it to the viewer.
I've talked with a few climbers and they tell me the rocks talk to them, there's a knowing, a bond. Rocks are rocks to me, but a tree, a stream, a flower, a trail, they all have so much to say it's overwhelming at times while at others their silence is joy. I understand Galen better than I should and I understand his photo more than I want to, but rocks are rocks to me, I see hard, I see cold, I see ancient.
I thought of you when I wrote my piece and almost edited it out knowing how well you shoot but thought you might pick up on the metaphor and left it hoping it would spark something. I think we can all learn to shoot, it's not that hard really and is why it's called Point And Shoot, but learning to see is a whole other thing, and I think in a way you either see it or you don't. Seeing isn't all that hard either, but there's some mystical something that keeps most of us from it and I love learning why!
This is an interesting discussion, for as much as I don't like the posted image I am jealous of the experiences he had and the life he made. I'm pretty chill so I think it would have been challenging to work with him, but would I if I could - I'm already packed! S-
I think we all see (as opposed to just look) at least some of the time. I think I've managed a few shots where it looks as if I were truly seeing. I saw something not long ago about a musician. Someone asked how she got so good. "Practice," she said.
Yeah, but really ...
It's probably the most well duh thing ever, but practice really is key. Steve, you've just challenged us to try to do without the rule/suggestion/guideline/indication/outline of thirds. I don't know if I will rise to it because I don't know how! I realize that I use it rather a lot, more than I thought, in various ways. I divide frames into horizontal thirds, vertical thirds, I place the main subject on or at least near the intersection of thirds... I don't think I can make a picture without it. I usually have the grid right up in my finder, although (thanks to PRACTICE) I can manage a composition without the grid, but I really can't manage a composition without consciously laying it out on the grid whether I can physically see it or not. I was on an airplane once and saw a young woman with a longish black leather thing with a suitcase handle. She opened it and laid it across her tray table. It was a short piano keyboard, 28 full size ivory keys, completely soundless. She began practicing etudes, not making a sound beyond a little thumping. I discovered that many of the great artists of the day, Van Cliburn, Horowitz, carried such an "instrument" everywhere. They were practicing fingering. Today they make them in silicon with earphones so the artist can hear the instrument, but they still want their fingering to be totally muscle memory, no thought, just --- there. They can hear the music just fine in their heads. I think it can apply to cameras and photography.
When I was working, shooting pictures all day every day, sometimes 7 days a week if I had weddings, I was making portraits and PR and commercial with every format from 35mm to 4x5" (split 5x7 actually but that's splitting hairs (see what I did there?)), even all the way up to 8x10.* We urge folks to work to make the camera an extension of hand, eye, and mind, but what if you routinely use many cameras? I'm here to tell you that they all became extensions of my hand, eye, and mind by using them every day. Shifting from one to another was all muscle memory. So was/is composition in the camera. We were taught to frame tight, "fill the frame!" Avoid cropping. For me sometimes that becomes a liability, framing so tightly that I can't crop if I want to. That's a habit I'm trying to break. But PRACTICE! Practicepracticepracticepracticepracticepracticepractice.
The lesson (I think) is the same one that photo instructors (specifically but it applies to many things) have been pounding into newbies for pretty much ever: SHOOT! In film days it was pretty $pendy but nowadays there seems no reason not to shoot and shoot and shoot and shoot and shoot and shoot and shoot. Yes, sometimes the "blind squirrel" thing happens, but if someone is serious and studies what they've shot, shares it with others (Mentoris anyone?), begins to develop a muscle memory for the camera, takes a camera everywhere, we're apt to get better than average. Nobody expects to be Galen Rowell or any other master, but ya never know. (Now all I gotta do is take my own advice.)
*(If you look at that picture, it has notes. If you mouse over there are captions describing what you are seeing.)