As a jazz musician, I was taught the value of mental practice. As a drummer, mentally practicing patterns and phrasing helped tremendously on the job. It’s a matter of keeping your mind in the game at all times. Transferring that knowledge to photography, I’ve always viewed and analyzed visual art in terms of composition, simplicity, impact, etc., basically, what did I like, and why?….and what did I not like, and why? Images that have a positive impact I tend to file away or make note of for future reference, or try to retain the vision of the maker in terms of style, etc.
When I first started in photography, I saw this great shot of cliff dwellings in Colorado and never forgot it. Everything about the cliff shot was great, but mostly, the sweeping graphic of the wall above the dwelling was amazing. I found the shot, as I remembered it, on a Utah hiking website w/ no photographer name attached. Then, while photographing in an old Tuberculosis hospital in Eldersburg, MD, I wandered into a screened in room and the roof was slightly collapsed and sweeping upwards with deeply water damaged patterns in the ceiling, very reminiscent of the cliff dwelling image from decades before. The similarity in subject material was readily apparent and the shot was composed with the cliff dwelling image in mind.
I’ve had many instances of this cognitive process and urge workshop clients to always analyze the work of others in terms of what they like and what works in the image and, more importantly, what doesn’t work and file this information away for future reference.
The urban decay image is a 5 image HDR, converted in Silver Efex Pro and sepia toned.
We’re off to Cape May, NJ for a quick overnight trip to test a new product and visit with friends.
Back on Monday to get my NEW MAC LAPTOP!!
Feel free to drop in a comment and we’ll see you online!