Subdued

I’m not a big fan of post-production editing of photographs. Surely the skill lies in taking the photograph and not digitally tweaking it after it’s been shot? That’s not to say I don’t tweak some photos but then I know I’m not a skilled photographer – yet! In my personal life I’ll sometimes Instagram a photo before putting it on Facebook, or sharpen the colours, crop it, removed blemishes, etc. But all in all I would prefer my photographs to be authentic.

Having said that, I don’t have a problem with photos which are clearly photoshopped because that’s the artist’s own style. You know the type I mean, pop art, abstract stuff.

As I’m not the skilled photographer I’d like to one day be, I do sometimes take a photograph and think ‘I swear the colours were brighter in real life’. On those occasions I have sometimes adjusted the exposure and the like to make it a truer representation of the actual object or scene. But I hope I can soon learn enough about my camera for this to be unnecessary.

One photo that I took which I like the muted colours in is that shown below;

File1011

 

It was taken during a walk in Derbyshire in December 2013. I played about with my camera settings a lot during that weekend but, as I’ve mentioned before, my partner doesn’t have quite the same interest in photography so yet again this was a ‘snap-and-run-to-catch-up’ photo!

Critical Thinking

 Over the years I’ve taken a lot of ‘arty’ photos. Random photographs of unusual objects or certain textures, different light sources or playing around with the framing. What’s interesting now is to look over those same photographs with the critical eye of someone who’s considering baring their soul to the (often unkind) world of social media and saying ‘this is how I think a photo should be taken’. Photographs that I normally coo over and get all soppy about because they remind me of a great time or person suddenly become quickly overlooked when I’m looking for ‘that’ photo. The one that will stand out. The one that makes you feel like you’re there or shows an interesting concept. 

Sometimes I also look back and think ‘if only’. If only I’d had Nixolas Alfredo back then and not just my iPhone. If only I’d just moved the frame an inch to the right. (Speaking of which, am I the only person who seems to think if I crane my neck a little more I’ll be able to see around the corner of the photo?!) If only I’d tilted the angle just a little further up.  

IMG_1556

 

IMG_2085

 

These two photos are examples of the first ‘if only’. I took them whilst on holiday in Croatia in June 2013, which is a country just asking to be photographed. The first was one I snapped exceptionally quickly before boarding the boat that took us to the Island Kolocep where we were staying. I love boats so it was great to take some photos of everything from the glossy cruise ships to the old row boat to the novelty tourist-fuelled pirate ship.

The second was a lucky moment with the early morning sunlight on the day of our departure. It was about 6.30am and I loved the soft yellow parasols against the muted colours of the beach scene and those deep grooves in the sand from the dedicated hotel staff who carefully lined up the sun-loungers each day to keep the place looking, well, picturesque.

 

10153511523265052 (1)

I hate that it is necessary to have to watermark my photos as I would love to be able to share them without a load of writing scratched across each. However, I know that there are a few dishonest people out there, unfortunately. If this were a blog where I was only uploading photos to illustrate a story then I wouldn’t care but as I may be selling some of these images for use on greeting cards and the like, I have to ensure I’m selling something that no one else can!

So, I’ve added a small watermark to each of my photos using Watermark.ws, which is a free online service. Hopefully it’s small enough not to distract from the image but also difficult enough to remove that it will deter any less than honest folk.

Anyhow, what do you think of the above image? I took it during a visit to Coombe Abbey Hotel in November 2013. I’ve played around with it in editing programmes but this is the original photo and I must admit I love it. Not because it’s unusual or a tricky shot. I love it because it really sums up the beauty of winter.

I’m Not a Photographer

I’m Not a Photographer

I can’t call myself a photographer; I’m just someone who loves to take photographs.

‘Photographer’ is a status applied too freely to almost anyone and everyone who has a camera and takes the occasion good photo, often by chance. To me, a photographer is someone who’s dedicated the time and energy into producing great photographs without the ‘chance’ element. It’s akin to someone who appears in an amateur production of ‘Calamity Jane’ calling themselves an ‘actor’. No, you’re not – you’re just someone who enjoys acting.

Okay, now that’s cleared up, on to the main focus of the blog.

I would like to think my photos could be used for greeting cards. It might not sound like a ‘reach for the stars’ dream for a lot of people but, in this age of constant online communication, I personally love sending and receiving greeting cards. Whether it’s for a birthday, a new job or just to say ‘hi’ to an old friend, a card is a great way of conveying a mood and a message. And, if you’re anything like me, simply seeing an envelope on the doormat that isn’t a bill is exciting in itself!

I keep all the cards I receive and the ones which aren’t themed cards (i.e. such as ‘Happy Birthday’ or such like) are often framed and put on the wall or stuck to the noticeboard for all to see.

So, yes, I think greeting cards are a great way to go. Add into the mix that they often feature my favourite things to photograph – cats, dogs, flowers and landscapes – and it’s a win-win! 😉