Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Photography - Still Life and Shaping

Light, Shadow, Shape

Natural light helps shape the image as does the shaded areas. Each pear reacts differently to the highlighting. Still life studies have been used by many artists to make an object appear three dimensional in a two dimensional representation (a sketch or painting).

Natural light coming from the side:

Pears, a study in light by DG Hudson, Image 1

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Looking from above, we see how the trio of pears vary individually in their response to light, shadow, and the reflection in the window. We see colour in the objects but the reflections show mostly green, like a ghost image.

Lighting from side reveals details on top of object:


Pears and Natural  Lighting - by DG Hudson, Image 2

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Pears in sunlight. Bartlett Pears. The shading and light which define an object are easy to see. Keep this in mind when photographing any subject. What will be in shadow and what will be in bright light? When the object has light behind it (back-lighting) you may need to use another light source to fill the main subject. In daylight this is occasionally needed.


Extreme closeup of whole objects
Light comes from side and above


Pears, Close-Up with Lighting by DG Hudson, Image 3



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Do you search for objects or location images to photograph? Are you a fast photographer just trying to capture a moment in time, or are you trying to satisfy an artistic urge? Do you take photos with a camera or with your smartphone, or a device other than a camera?

Reality: most people nearly always have their phone in hand, but not a camera. . .

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Please leave a comment to let me know you were here and I'll respond. Thanks for dropping by, posts are updated as time permits.  These posts about photography are to help those who like taking images but need a few basics about the composition, lighting and placement of objects, location and various subjects. 

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22 comments:

  1. I have a canon camera which takes great pics. Some of my pics are artsy but a lot of times I'm just trying to capture everything I'm doing at that moment.

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    1. I'm always thinking about how I will use a certain photo, but at times I've had to point and click and hope for the best. An image can easily be fixed now if the lighting, and other factors need tweaking.

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  2. I take a lot of photos. Usually trying to capture the moment, but sometimes looking for a particular effect.
    I rarely take photos with my phone. Which is rarely in my hand.
    Thanks for the tips.
    And congratulations on your WEP success.

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    1. Thanks, EC, I don't usually have my phone in my hand either. (it's something I have to look for when it rings since I've usually left it in another room, etc.) I know from your photos that you take care when you aim that lens.

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  3. Replies
    1. Thanks, I do like pears, had never tried them before coming to Canada, it was too hot where I grew up. I also like watching how light can change the effect on any object.

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  4. Replies
    1. Thanks for visiting! More on photography under The Lens tab at the top of the page.

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  5. Stuff like this really fascinates me, not as a photographer, but as a blog comic drawer (totally my official title) who's trying to improve his artwork, including the shading aspect. Even just studying the various shadowing of each picture has taught me a little bit more about shading. Cool post!

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    1. Glad it helps in your drawing, that's my purpose in sharing what I know about photography. I drew hubs portrait from a photo, and did a painting of his sports car from another photo. One of my daughters cartoons, both paint as well. We have pubs here where you go and learn the basics of painting with an artist on hand to help.

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  6. You know, if I took the time to get into photography, I think I'd get quite artistic, but as it is, I think my writing, music composition & performance, and cartooning is enough. When I take a shot, I try to get ideal lighting, but it's more important to be quick.

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    1. Yes it is important to catch the moment, and it sounds like you've chosen your priorities. Since I like sketching, photography gives me a way to save something I might want to draw at a later time. As a result I have to take the photos when the light is just right.

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  7. I guess I am a snap shot person. I take pictures to record something. I don't have a camera phone so use a regular camera.

    I am curious, where did you grow up if you didn't have pears?

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    1. I grew up in Georgia, in the southern USA. We were closer to Florida. We had pecan trees and peach trees, but no apples, no pears, and no Bing cherries. I don't think the soil or the climate were right.

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  8. I like the composition in your first photo - but I confess that what really drew me in was the idea of a trio of pears.

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    1. Interesting. I like grouping things in odd numbers. . .for visual impact and I like seeing patterns in images. I'm pleased you stopped by, Mike, whatever drew you in.

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  9. Nice visual compositions. I very rarely take pictures with my phone and hardly ever take photos period. On occasion I might take a photo of an object or view, but I don't recall any that turned out as nicely as yours.

    Arlee Bird
    Tossing It Out

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    1. Thanks, Lee. I have been into photography since my 20s. My mother's hobby, I'm sure she influenced me. I wanted a camera when I was ten yrs old, when other girls were asking for Barbies.

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  10. Interesting study. Lighting is so important in photos. I'm both kinds of photographer, depending upon the day, and sometimes find myself frustrated because I see something that I can't quite capture. I'd like to take a photography class some day.

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    1. I have studied lighting during a film course and a basic TV course (about production and the floor crew. We had to plan the lighting for our projects. That said, natural lighting is my favourite for photography.

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  11. Replies
    1. You think so? Interesting. I try to arrange objects for the best visual appeal, it's fun to me.

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