Tuesday, April 30, 2013

A Successful Photograph

This photograph had me asking myself what makes a successful photo. Is a photo a success because it is tack sharp? Or is it because it has caught the decisive moment? Maybe it is successful because the colors are rendered perfectly. In truth, there are probably many reasons a photo might be thought successful. I liked this image instantly when I saw it. I know, I know, most people would probably trash it. But, despite it's shortcomings, it conveys a message of trust and love and caring. I'm not sure if a tack sharp image would have done that.

Just as my wife was coming up the porch steps, the light changed from bright sunlight to shade and the shutter speed dropped to 1/6 sec. (on a not particularly fast lens), causing the image to blur. I was using a kit lens on an older DSLR body. The lens can be produced cheaply because it is not fast (f/5.6). One of the differences between amateurs, such as myself, and professionals is the lens they use. Pros use top of the line lens which are very fast (f/2.8 - sometimes even f/1.4). These are also very expensive lens, most starting at greater than a thousand dollars, and are hard to justify for use in a hobby. I'm not making excuses; that is just the way it is.

You cannot predict how a blurred photograph will look. Even if you intentionally take a blurred photo, the results are not predictable. I was surprised how my wife's coat appears to have a texture that is not really there and how Jojo ( our peke's) chin hair rendered fairly distinctly. The negative "halo" around the edge of his neck and head adds interest too. It is hard for me to determine whether I'm too subjective because I know the dog and the person or whether the photo stands as interesting in it's own right.

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