The opening chapter of ‘Read this if you want to take better photographs‘ by Carroll, encourages a consideration of light as an object: although (light) is intangible, it has the ‘power of a shape-shifter: the mundane can become beautiful, and the beautiful, mundane’ depending on the light. Light can ‘draw out textures, colour and detail’ and can create ‘depth’ or flatness.
Further to my considerations of the work of Sally Mann, Michael Schmidt and Trent Parke, for exercise 4.2, I stumbled upon a bright clear day one weekend when I had hoped for soft diffused light. I was forced to re-consider my morning’s photography quite abruptly, to re-look at the light and formulate an alternative approach.
I continued with my plans but, instead of the soft, foggy images I had in mind, I began to notice the way in which this unusual early February light brought out the contrasts and shadows and textures in the lovely countryside environment.
Not quite the hard light favoured by Parke, yet not the softness of Mann’s images, this light created texture in the natural world, and emphasised darkness and light creating pleasing contrast that provided additional interest and detail.
I have in mind that I may use some of my images to present work using natural light for assignment 4. However, first, here are three examples to illustrate the effects of hard light and contrast, as further analysis for exercise 4.2:
These images stand in contrast to my low-contrast images at my post Learning Diary 6 .
The definite blacks and definite whites create more dramatic images, and the way in which the light emphasises shapes and textures further creates drama and interest. I used mono rather than colour to further show the contrast of black and white, adding to the sense of depth, shape and texture.
Carroll, H (2014)Read this if you want to take great photographs. Laurence King. London.