Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Teaching Traditional Photography

There's a difference between taking a picture and creating a photograph. It's a hard difference to teach since everyone thinks they're a gifted photographer.

I've even heard it's a stage people go through.... right after the "I want to own a horse" stage. My kids have never wanted to be photographers.... they see how hard I work and the hours I put in, besides they have their own trail to blaze.

Owning a photography business is similar to owning a family farm. Everyone in the family chips in, you make some money and when schools over I have more helpers. I'm not sure the kids have seen it this way but at least they have summer jobs for life.

My kids have always taken a lot of pictures and we have computers filled with images to prove it.... just not many photographs.

My oldest daughter is planning to travel to Haiti next week to help out and we decided she should take some black and white photographs to go along with the digital images she would normally get. So each day she learns a bit more.

This is day one.

We went over how to load the film into the camera. How to set the film sensitivity (ISO) and how the shutter speed works. Keeping it simple is the rule and we figured if she can keep the shutter speed over 125 she could get sharp pictures. Without going into f-stops and aperture I showed her how to adjust the lens to keep the shutter speed at 125.

We added an orange filter to the lens and I explained how it would keep the background sky darker in the photo. We went to a local barnyard and tried a bunch of photos with the 35mm lens and the 85mm. To keep the lighting simple we took photos in the shade, changing the aperture to keep the shutter speed at 125. After shooting most of the roll we went back to the studio where she processed the film.

This is the best shot from the first shoot.

Rob Skeoch

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