Monday, March 19, 2012
Taking a good photograph is about so many things, far more than just pointing the camera when you see a scene worth preserving. If you want to get an image that will be looked at and remarked upon by all who look at it, you really have to create an impression of “being there”. This is all the more difficult if you are taking photographs of live action rather than still life.
If you go to a sports match, for example, it is perfectly understandable that you will want to capture some images of it to look at later on and to show to your friends. However, you are competing with a lot of different factors to get a really good picture of the occasion. There is the fact that a moving target is harder to catch, there is the problem of a crowd which is unlikely to be keeping still, and often there is an issue of lighting.
Without a doubt, someone wanting to get good action shots will need the right shutter speed – faster action will require a faster shutter speed in order to avoid becoming too blurred. On the other hand, some blurring can be beneficial in conveying the action that is taking place. How you position the camera, and even how you move it, will play an important part.
Timing is of course the central issue when it comes to capturing action shots. If, for example, you are watching a basketball match, you can get a good feel for motion by taking a photograph of something that cannot happen without motion. Snapping a photo of someone hitting a slam dunk – an image that can only happen while the person is in motion - is one good way of doing this.
If you are a social networker, then the chances are that you have seen more bad photographs than you would ever care to remember. People are more prone these days to take a photograph than they used to be, and the reason for this – or at least, the primary reason – is that they can take photographs and see them instantly without having to pay for them.
The invention of the camera phone was a pivotal moment for cell phone companies, who have been able to sell loads of phones on the strength of their multiple usability. It has also resulted in people being willing to take a lot more photographs than they used to be. Time was that you needed a camera, plenty of film and a lot of patience to take photographs.
You see, once you had used a frame of film, you couldn't delete it and you were stuck with it. And when you had used the whole film you needed to carefully remove it from the camera so that it didn't get light on it, and take it to be developed (either at a dedicated outlet or in your own dark room, if you had the facilities). The whole process would cost money.
Now, if the photo you take is bad, you can delete it – but many people don't. A lot of online photo streams now have lots of blurry images of someone's right knee because the photographer was drunk and using a phone to take the pictures. With progress, sometimes, you have to accept the bad with the good.