Thursday, November 11, 2010

These boots are made for blurring

click photo to enlarge
The best way to improve your photography is to take photographs. Even when you feel no inspiration, are disatisfied with your output, and can't see an image to save your life, keep taking photographs. As I've observed before, in time the shots will come to you without you having to chase them.

Another strategy that you can adopt is to set yourself a target or project. This blog is part of my ongoing attempt to improve my photography. The simple fact of having to come up with frequent images that are good enough for you to present to the world without feeling too much shame or embarrassment, is an excellent motivator. It has made me search for images in places where I might otherwise not have looked, and consider styles of photography that don't come naturally to me. Ultimately it has driven me into a range and type of photgraphy that I feel comfortable with, but which is fairly wide-ranging. And, it has helped me to understand what I am doing when I make images.

But, sometimes you have to be a little more specific. In recent months I've made a conscious effort to try and photograph more contre jour subjects. Many of what I consider to be my early successes came from this approach and I felt I'd neglected it in the past couple of years. I've done some, but perhaps not as many as I would have liked. Recently I've given some thought to motion blur shots. My most recent iteration of Best of PhotoReflect (version 5) has a section with this title. It was always my intention to mine this seam for a while and fill out this category. However, I've done precious few such shots since I put it together. So, that's my latest aim - more motion blur. Today's photograph is the first of my recent attempts that I'm sufficiently happy with to post. It shows booted feet ahead of me as, with my companions, we ascended some steel stairs at Tate Modern in London. I liked the colour, repetition, simplicity and interesting blur of this shot. We were on our way to see the latest work to fill the old turbine hall, the gallery's main space -it is Ai Weiwei's "Sunflower Seeds" - and I found it an underwhelming experience. Of which more later!

photograph and text (c) T. Boughen

Camera: Canon
Mode: Aperture Priority
Focal Length: 67mm
F No: f6.3
Shutter Speed: 1/4
ISO: 3200
Exposure Compensation: 0 EV
Image Stabilisation: On