Still stuck at home, and that means it's time to improvise. This quarantine has taken Chris back to when he had little in the way of gear and had to get creative. Take a photo of yourself every day and document your isolation. It's also a great time to explore the lighting in your home. Daylight is the best light you have, and diffuse light is nice and soft. Shoot your garden. There's macro photography. Food photography. Tabletop photography. Product photography.
Chris got the flight out of Zimbabwe when the country expelled all foreigners. And it's looking like the rest of Chris' travel photo workshops will be canceled during the outbreak. Like everywhere else, everything is shut down, though most areas don't have a mandatory shelter in place order. But social distancing is being practiced with no more than two in a group. Chris works from home anyway. So this is normal for him.
Chris is on assignment in Siberia this week, and prerecorded his segment, on GPS. Leo says he doesn't have GPS built into one camera, but it is in his 5D Mk. IV. Chris says that he doesn't use GPS all that much, but if you need it, you can always take a cell phone picture as well and have that GPS embedded. But Chris honestly doesn't care about GPS.
Chris gives us a mini assignment this week, similar to the ABC assignment last week. The A is for Abstract. Spend some times looking for abstract shapes, forms, colors and shoot a picture of them. B - Background. Today, we focus on the foreground. But what about the background? Take a picture that focuses on the background of the image, and how it interacts with your main subject. It could be a frame, color, shape, just about anything. Finally ...
As we move from winter to spring, there's a lot of great opportunities to capture stunning images in the rain. You can go to flicker and type "rain, street, night," to see how stunning an image you can get after it rains. There are some remarkable reflections that can be had at night.
Shooting in the fog can be an effective option as well. Fog can wash out color and make many things appear in silhouette. It provides an air of mystery to the image.
Chris joins Leo to talk about how to get your creative juices flowing with photography in the new year. Chris offers three little assignments ... A) look for alternating structures. This can be color, texture, design; it doesn't matter: just something that alternates in the image. Shoot from different angles. Play with it. B) Break some rules, especially your own rules. This will make you aware of the rules you follow subconsciously. For example: shoot a portrait with a wide-angle lens. Raise the ISO as high as you can and lean into the noise.
Chris likes shooting pictures during the holidays because it's so different from any other time of the year. Lights, for instance, create a mode, and you can use the placement of those lights, with a shallow depth of field, to make a beautiful image. But you don't want to use a flash. It'll completely kill the mood that you're trying to create. It'll also wash things out and blind your subject. Ultimately, killing the mood. You could use an orange gel on the flash or bounce the flash off the ceiling. That could help.
Chris joins us to talk about using Wider Angles. The new iPhone has a .5x ultra wide-angle lens, and often we can include things in our pictures that we don't want. So Chris recommends doing a background check to see what is in the background. Also, do a "border patrol" and check what's at the edges of your image. See what's going on as it might be intruding in the frame.
Another issue with ultra wide-angle is a slight distortion at the edges of the frame. Anything at the edge can get stretched. To avoid it, place your subject more towards the middle.
Chris joins Leo to talk about using your camera to collect things, taking pictures of things you like and make that your digital collection. You can then back them up to Google Photos and use it to organize your images according to collection, color, face, just about anything. It's a great way to learn photography management.
Chris says that there are five things you can do to practice your photography:
1. Fifty Steps/Fifty Photos. Chris says to walk fifty steps and then take fifty photos. This will challenge you to look at a scene from various angles.
2. People/No People. Take pictures for one hour without people in a touristy area. Then try going to a remote area and take only pictures of people. It's a great challenge.