Project 1 – The Instrument

Ok, here we go. I am very late starting the course after moving house and getting prepared. The biggest question is if a dire hart computer export can turn into artistic and academic photographer. After reading the first part of the book I all of a sudden had big doubts. Computers are based on clear facts and rules which are learned and applied. Now all of a sudden I have to place a point into a picture and write down, how I feel about that. Is the point in the right position related to the frame? How would I know? Isn’t that what I am supposed to learn in this course?

Well, let’s get cracking.

→ Expressing your Vision – Page 19:

“On the other hand, if you bought a Nikon D600 in 2012 you might decide to take a short  course at your local college rather than read the 368-page manual. The digital camera is a highly complex and sophisticated tool and that’s part of the fun for many ‘amateur’ photographers who want to lose themselves in the programme, looking for more and more possibilities only to find that it’s apparently inexhaustible.”

Fully agree with the text. Today’s cameras are getting overcomplicated. I often find myself going through endless menus looking for simple parameter changes. What a pleasure to work with simple manual film cameras.

→ Expressing your Vision – Page 20:

“In hyperfunctionality, the technological object is not practical, but obsessional; not utilitarian, but functional (always in an abstract sense); the object or gadget no longer serves the world, performing  some useful task – it serves us: our dreams, desires of what objects can and should do”

Not just photo cameras. Also phones, computers and other gadgets.
One of the reasons I took the course is that I didn’t improve in my photographic skills even so that modern cameras offer more functionality.

Exercise 1.1

“Task: Take three or four exposures of the same scene. Don’t change anything on the camera and keep the framing the same. Preview the shots on the LCD screen. At first glance they look the same, but are they?”

It makes perfect sense that they are not the same. Subtle changes in all pictures. The world is an ‘analogue’ world with continuously variable physical quantity like light and spatial positions. Let’s have a look:

OK, this is a bit too obvious. J

EyV_part1-1histo img1

EyV_part1-2histo img2

EyV_part1-3histo img3

Point taken. Even so the image looks very much the same, subtle changes in the histograms are recognizable. The frames are also slightly different due to the fact that the camera was handheld.

→ Expressing your Vision – Page 22:

“‘to consult rules of composition before making a picture is a little like consulting the law of gravity before going for a walk’ (Weston, 1930, p.320). “

So how do one learn the photographic skills without learning composition? It is not genetically given knowledge.

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