Friday, January 21, 2011

Amateur fer sure

One of the greatest results of the explosion of blogging is the increase in amateur photographers.  It is rare to click on a blog and not see a photo or two.  Photos make a blog interesting.  Unless, of course, you are one of those talented writers with a knack for hilarious or thoughtful posts that need no distraction of photography.  I’m not one of those!

I have three cameras:

My Canon Powershot is a great little pocket camera.  It is almost always in my pocket and takes great pictures.  I really like its Macro setting.  So easy and clear.  I love it!

We have had our Pentax istD camera for quite a few years.  It is a great 35mm camera.  Last summer we started having trouble with the lens’ auto-focus function.  More than likely it had been bumped one too many times.  The common sense solution would be to have it repaired or replace the lens.  But, I have to admit I had my heart set on a new Canon Rebel.  Besides, it isn’t fair that I was using a 35mm and Jim had none, was it?  You know, the guy I’m married to – the guy who taught High School Photography for many years? 

So last fall, we bit the bullet and bought the Canon EOS Rebel T2i along with a zoom lens.  With an investment like this, I’d better plan on taking pictures!

I’ve always liked to take pictures, but now when I head out with my camera, my mind is creating a story as I look through the lens. 

So on this dreary, cold, and snowy night, I am going to share my purely amateur thoughts on photography. 

2011-01-20 jan 11 snow2

I love contrast.  These two photos are color with no touch up.  You would think they were black and white.  It is easy to get contrast in snow – as simple as bending over to shoot a picture of dried prairie grass against the stark white snow, or looking to a majestic oak tree against a snow laden sky.


2011-01-20 jan 11 snow3

Framing my pictures is a big thing with me.  Whether I use a fence, trees, or just an item in the foreground, I like to frame my pictures whenever possible.  The cedar trees provide a frame for the dried grass.  Or are they framing the dreary sky?  Or maybe the grass and sky are framing the cedars.  Hmmm.  The forked tree frames the snow laden cedars in the background.  I do wish I had focused more on the cedars, rather than the foreground tree.


2011-01-20 jan 11 snow1

When I focused on the barbed wire, my thoughts went to a number of stories.  A story of danger, or privacy, or cruelty.  The other picture focused on the cedars lining the frozen pond bank.  Quite a different story.


2011-01-20 jan 11 snow4

The fence in the above photo leads the eyes into the photo, giving it depth.  Leaving you to maybe even wonder where it leads.  Isn’t that so much more interesting than the photo with no fence?


2011-01-20 jan 11 snow5


The photo on the left tells a story about how messy snow, and wood needed for the fire place, is.  The one on the right talks about just how deep the snow is.


So how about you?  Do you just randomly snap pictures and hope for the best, or do you envision a story as you look through the lens of your camera?


AliceKay said...

This is a great post. I loved all of your photos. You have a great eye for photography. Being married to someone who used to teach high school photography is probably a bonus. :) We never had photograph class in school. :(

I love taking pictures. Have ever since I was a young teen.

Thanks for sharing your photos and your thoughts. *hugs*

P.S. It's bitter cold here...the coldest weekend of the winter is upon us. :\

AliceKay said...

*inserts a "y" up there in photography*

Rita said...

I guess I always try to "frame" what little I photograph so that the focus is right and the light is the best I can get. I am notorious for taking many shots to get the best one. Maybe because I have only been taking photos for the last about three years for my blog and I didn't know what I was doing. I love your ideas and the comparisons you make between the photos--and the photos themselves. :)

Nana said...

Great pictures and advice. That is my next venture. I want a new camera in the worst way. Well, it was either new shutters for the bedroom or a camera. I chose shutters for now. The camer will be next.

Rural Rambler said...

Deanna what a great post! Your hubby taught photography?! How cool, wish I could pick his brain. I love your photo with the fence. I could just blahblahblab here in comments on this post but I will spare you. I think I pretty much fly by the seat of my pants when I snap pictures. I try to remember some of the "rules" but I break them all the time. I just keep trying and fiddling with the buttons and dials. I love picture takin'!

Vicki Lane said...

Congratulations on the new camera -- and I love your side by side shots with comments.

Yes, I generally try to frame my shots -- but if I'm in a hurry I hope for the best and plan on some straightening and cropping.

Anonymous said...

Sure sounds like professional thoughts on photography to me, and wow on the pictures you took those are just breathtaking and I love how you did the pictures with the barbed wire, thanks so much for sharing HUGS

~Tonia said...

Ahh I sooooo want the Canon Rebel buti have yet to make the investment when so many other things are needed. So for now its little Kodak Easyshare cameras.BUt I absolutely love having a digital with no film to develop!!
Great post!

junyah said...

i bought a Kodak Easy Share ZD710 back a few years ago.E-Bay i think.I got what i paid for.Now im looking at a better camera (someday).The one thing i did notice with your Pictures, Besides them being great... you keep saying ceders and im looking at Spruces..Huh??lol Y.O.P. Junyah HUgs U

Deanna said...

Hey JR,

We don't have a single spruce on this property.

Jopete always called them Junipers but in this neck of the woods, we call them cedars. Maybe the amount of snow made them look like spruces. I'll take a picture and send to you when the snow is gone.



Queenie Jeannie said...

Amazing photos!! You are very, very talented!

tattytiara said...

Oh I'm definitely a random snapper, and an infrequent one at that. I'm so glad you wrote about photography today so I could easily work in a compliment on your banner image!

Toriz said...

When I was in a writing group before, we were given a photo and told to write a story from looking at that one photo.

Sometimes I used to just snap photos of "nice" looking things, but other times I'd do what I do now and only get photos for reasons. There is a certain amount of hoping for the best involved with my picture taking though, obviously. As in, hoping I actually have what I was aiming for in the photo.

I always loved taking photos. I miss being able to see it through from start to finish... From trying to get the right angle to get the best shot to posting the pictures with their story, and everything in between.

Intense Guy said...

Lovely pictures. Once of the nicest things about digital photography is that the "film" is very cheap and you can take thousands of pictures (even of the same icicle). But even nicer, is that the digital world now lets us easily share photos the world over - with all and everyone.

I love the shot of the two dogs in the header. :)