Although I am normally quite confident with my camera, this assignment has shown me that I still have a lot to learn.
When shooting with my camera, I have also learnt new concepts about using a combination of aperture and shutter speed settings to alter the qualities of the images I want to shoot. For example a wider aperture will give the camera sensor access to more light, but will also decrease the depth of field making it easier for subject isolation. While a slower shutter speed will expose the sensor to the light for longer, but if you go slower than 1/150th, you increase the risk of camera shake. To combat this you should use a tripod or a lens, which is optically stabilised.
I have learnt a lot while only scratching the surface of what is possible with Photoshop. I have had previous experience with the Aperture graphics package, but when editing an image, the principles of non-destructive editing are different. I understand now that Photoshop has layers for when editing images. But in recent versions of Photoshop there are a variety of layers that can be used.
I have learned how to use the Photoshop Adjustment Masks which can be used to edit the appearance of an image but without changing the original, allowing you to go back and fourth with different styles of editing without having to reimport the image or worry that the original file will be modified.
I also learnt new ideas and concepts from the research side of the assignment. For my visual research, I looked at pictures taken by, Trent Parke (an Australian Street Photographer), Vivian Maier (an American Street photographer) and Angus McBean (a Welsh Photographer).
I was mostly captivated by Trent Parke’s work. This gave me inspiration to look beyond the composition of the image and what the image is trying to say. I went out and took some Long exposures to try and create dark and mysterious images. But I also applied this to my studio work as well with one of my images being a portrait with only half of the face visible and another person blurred out in the background. Thus shrouding the image in mystery.
I also learnt that drawing the formal elements of a picture helps me as a photographer to compose better images by seeing lines and implied lines within the frame. This technique also helps explain an analysis of an image, as it as a visual aid to explaining the image.
I am very happy with the shots I took in the studio because it was easy to control the lighting. Although I have used studio lights before, I have learned a lot more about diffusing light. I think I got good results with these techniques.
I enjoyed shooting long exposures for this project, and I think I got some results from this technique that were suitable for this assignment.
I was less happy with the results of my location shoots, but I am still getting used to using my camera outside, so I hope to improve this aspect of my photography.
For example, although using a lower aperture gave me more light and I found that this decreased the depth of field more than I wanted.
I think I need to work on composition of images a lot more, as well as learning more about how to adapt the camera settings to the light when shooting on location.
Overall I think my project was a success.