2020 Photo Challenge #19

May’s theme / technique: It’s all about the Light

The six visual keys to a great photograph are:

    • Patterns
    • Texture
    • Lines
    • Light
    • Depth of field
    • Space

Being Creative with light. Photography literally means writing with light which immediately tells you how important lighting is. And with light comes shadows. Another important feature. An appreciation of light is crucial to making great photographs.

The qualities of light that affect a photograph are:

    1. brightness of light
      this is fairly easy to understand; it is the intensity of light.
    2. lighting contrasts
      is the difference between highlights and shadows in a scene
    3. specular light
      or hard light can be explained by thinking how sunlight strikes an object on a bright and clear day. One side will be lit up, the other in dark shadow.
    4. diffused light
      on the other hand when it is an overcast day the sun lights the clouds and they become the source of light. Light wraps itself around the subject and reflects light into the shadows. The light is soft or diffused.
    5. direction of light
      creating depth in photographs relies on knowing the source of the light. Front light comes from behind the camera and strikes the front of the scene, usually producing a 2-dimensional image. Use bold colours or a strong colour contrast to replace the lack of shadows. Sidelight is most apparent when the sun is low and shadows are long separating foreground from the background and giving a 3-dimensional look. Backlight comes from behind the subject and can create depth and shape. If a subject is transparent then backlighting is a way to make them glow.
    6. colour of light
      Sometimes you can actually see the colour of light. The so-called ‘magic hours‘ before sunrise or after sunset can produce coloured air which can be pink or orange or golden. Everything seems to change colour. There is also the question of white balance (WB). A setting on your camera that makes things that are supposed to be white really look white. This setting can be changed either in the camera, or if you shoot in RAW, in processing.

As I have previously said, I am not an expert in the technicalities of photography. I tend to use auto settings most of the time. I have altered the white balance occasionally when it has been cloudy or when photographing snow, to prevent that blueness you often get. But by all means experiment to see what difference the presets in your camera make.

This week's assignment - Study light throughout the day from one location / or one object returning to see how light changes and affects it. Compile 6 shots. Which is your favourite?

Continue reading 2020 Photo Challenge #19

2020 Photo Challenge #18

May’s theme / technique: It’s all about the Light

If you want to see what this month’s assignments are in advance then please click here. All the assignments are available from the menu on the left under the 2020 Photo Challenge / Assignments.

The six visual keys to a great photograph are:

    • Patterns
    • Texture
    • Lines
    • Light
    • Depth of field
    • Space

Being Creative with light. Photography literally means writing with light which immediately tells you how important lighting is. And with light comes shadows. Another important feature. An appreciation of light is crucial to making great photographs.

The qualities of light that affect a photograph are:

    1. brightness of light
      this is fairly easy to understand; it is the intensity of light.
    2. lighting contrasts
      is the difference between highlights and shadows in a scene
    3. specular light
      or hard light can be explained by thinking how sunlight strikes an object on a bright and clear day. One side will be lit up, the other in dark shadow.
    4. diffused light
      on the other hand when it is an overcast day the sun lights the clouds and they become the source of light. Light wraps itself around the subject and reflects light into the shadows. The light is soft or diffused.
    5. direction of light
      creating depth in photographs relies on knowing the source of the light. Front light comes from behind the camera and strikes the front of the scene, usually producing a 2-dimensional image. Use bold colours or a strong colour contrast to replace the lack of shadows. Sidelight is most apparent when the sun is low and shadows are long separating foreground from the background and giving a 3-dimensional look. Backlight comes from behind the subject and can create depth and shape. If a subject is transparent then backlighting is a way to make them glow.
    6. colour of light
      Sometimes you can actually see the colour of light. The so-called ‘magic hours‘ before sunrise or after sunset can produce coloured air which can be pink or orange or golden. Everything seems to change colour. There is also the question of white balance (WB). A setting on your camera that makes things that are supposed to be white really look white. This setting can be changed either in the camera, or if you shoot in RAW, in processing.

As I have previously said, I am not an expert in the technicalities of photography. I tend to use auto settings most of the time. I have altered the white balance occasionally when it has been cloudy or when photographing snow, to prevent that blueness you often get. But by all means experiment to see what difference the presets in your camera make.

This week's assignment - Look for shadows. Strong light, casting well-defined shadows, can create interesting abstract images. Layering light and shadows brings a sense of depth to an image and can convey mystery.

Tip: Shadows are more dramatic when the sun is lower to the horizon

Continue reading 2020 Photo Challenge #18

Playing with Swirls

I was interested to play with some photo effects after reading a blog post on one of my favourite sites – The World According to Dina – about swirls and twirls.

I don’t have Photoshop, but I do have a version of Photoshop Elements so I thought I’d give it a go. I selected two photos that aren’t the best compositions.

(1) Tulip – I was interested to see how these colours would transform

I followed the video linked to in Dina’s blog, but I made some changes and stopped when I got this result because I rather like it.

Changing the colour hues makes a very different image

(2) Dusk – this was a fairly poor shot of a sunset and I dislike the trees at the bottom of the photo, but thought the streaks might work well.

And this is the result. I kept it very soft and pastel.

While we can’t go out to create new photos, or at least photos of different scenes, then using photo editing software to be creative is one way of enjoying photography at this time.

Thanks Hanne for the idea.

Day Thirty

The theme for Becky’s  April Squares challenge is ‘top’ 

    1. On Top of the World – summit, crown, peak or uppermost part of something
    2. Under the Big Top – topping or covering (or if you’re really lucky circus)
    3. Room at the Top – first or highest in position
    4. Cherry on Top – something made even more wonderful by becoming square
    5. Top and Tail – or maybe you’d prefer to play around with word combinations such as top dog, top stitch, top full, top line, top fruit, top hat, top secret, top knot, top drawer and top dollar!
random Top

Whilst safe practising  #StayAtHome this month and walking daily around our neighbourhood I couldn’t help but chuckle when I came across this house name! A fun finish to what has been a very enjoyable way of spending time all thanks to Becky. Now we wait to see what on earth she can come up with for July!

This is the last day of Becky’s Squares, but my photo challenge runs all year so if you fancy joining in then please have a look at the loosely based rules. And whilst Becky gets to take a break for a couple of months  I shall be hard at it! May is all about Being Creative with Light.

April Squares | Day Thirty

Day Twenty-nine

The theme for Becky’s  April Squares challenge is ‘top’ 

    1. On Top of the World – summit, crown, peak or uppermost part of something
    2. Under the Big Top – topping or covering (or if you’re really lucky circus)
    3. Room at the Top – first or highest in position
    4. Cherry on Top – something made even more wonderful by becoming square
    5. Top and Tail – or maybe you’d prefer to play around with word combinations such as top dog, top stitch, top full, top line, top fruit, top hat, top secret, top knot, top drawer and top dollar!
Tree top

Whilst walking around the lanes and up the hill I have been spending this month looking for tops for Becky’s challenge and lines for my own. This image has both.

This is the penultimate day of Becky’s Squares, but my photo challenge runs all year so if you fancy joining in, then please have a look at the loosely based rules. And whist Becky gets to take a break for a couple of months  I shall be hard at it!

April Squares | Day Twenty-nine