Let your skills rock the everyday scene

As admin of a grow­ing pho­tog­ra­phy web­site I look at a good 20–100 pho­tographs most days of the week. The qual­ity of work that I look at (both on our site and other web­sites) nor­mally ranges from pho­tog­ra­phy enthu­si­ast to pro.

One of the things that sep­a­rates ama­teurs from advanced amateurs/pros is the abil­ity to cre­ate the image rather than wait­ing for some­thing spec­tac­u­lar to hap­pen or find­ing it through serendip­ity. Get­ting to this level involves 3 key things that are 100% attain­able with a few months of reg­u­lar practice.

1 — You need to under­stand basic expo­sure.
2 — You need to under­stand basic com­po­si­tion
3 — You need to under­stand basic lighting.

A per­son that prac­tices all 3 of these things can cre­ate great shots from oth­er­wise mun­dane scenes. IF they are wait­ing for some­thing to hap­pen (like wait­ing for great out­door light),‚ they make sure they are wait­ing at the right time.

Sunset landing by Michael Wollen

Sun­set land­ing by Michael Wollen — Click to see larger version.

The image above by forum mem­ber michaelaw (real name Michael Wollen ) is a great exam­ple. How many times have we looked up at the sky to watch a plane land in the dis­tance. Likely many times. It’s a com­mon scene. Some might even call it banal. But take a look at THIS image. It is care­fully crafted — NO acci­dents here.

Look at the beau­ti­ful light in the sky. Michael waited for this light. Look at the posi­tion of the plane in the sky. Michael waited to freeze the plane in that exact spot. Look at the land­ing pad at the lower part of the image, look at the foliage and shim­mer­ing water in the imme­di­ate fore­ground. They are there on pur­pose. They are there, because Michael put them there. Because Michael put them there at the right time,‚ in the right place, and exposed the image cor­rectly — This pho­to­graph sings and is a plea­sure to look at.

Prac­tice the 3 basics listed above and you too will be armed with the skills needed to cre­ate great pho­tog­ra­phy from com­mon­place scenes.


  1. Bambi says:

    well cho­sen image Marko!

Speak Your Mind