I didn’t have to do much apart from being in the right place at the right time and actively looking at my surroundings. These leaves are as I found them, my only choices were the composition and exposure. I was so caught up in the leaves that I failed to notice the bird shaped shadow until I looked at the image on a larger screen



There is a lot to be said for building from a foundation of strength and knowledge (and using a reflector to lighten deep shadows and balance you exposure without resorting to HDR). It can be tricky to get exposure right on something this contrasty so using manual mode is a must.

Same image without the reflector just exposed for the highlights. I actually don’t mind this as there is still a hint of detail in the shadow and the diagonal line from the middle to bottom left is stronger but all that black makes it look top heavy to me. I could work if the image was square though.

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Not sure who said it originally but the skills that make a good photographer require regular exercise, not just to maintain them but for any extension of ability. Ultimately it gives you creative choices and control.

Out scouting

Out scouting

Sometimes it’s okay to keep it simple, go out with minimal gear and just look around.

This weekend I spent some time in Melbourne doing just that and these are some of the images. I’m happy with the two images of the posts in terms of composition.  I want to go back and see what they are like when it is not overcast. The late afternoon light will also change the way these look in terms of colour temperature. The stonework and ironwork door details were just a starting point. I want to go back when the sun is higher so that is just grazes the stonework and brings out the texture.

I tend to try and work quickly, unless there is something worth more effort it is best to keep moving. The images I make on these occasions act as a notebook to jog my memory. They prompt me so that next time I’m in that location I may be able to improve on what I saw with a different lens or time of day.  My phone does a pretty good job of note-taking. I can throw together camera images, location details and other notes fairly easily.