By Vicky Ogle
My name is Vicky Ogle and I am a member of the Cookeville Camera Club (CCC). We are a collection of talents joining together to share our knowledge and passion for the creative adventure called, photography (cookevillecameraclub.com). I am writing from a novice perspective.
Artists often choose a path and follow it until they reach mastery. In photography the shooter may choose to be known for black & white, portraits, landscapes, photojournalism and many more. Some people choose to focus on one idea in order to develop skills, technique and focus. The Getty Museum is located in Los Angeles, California. If you search their website you will find that they have something called ‘Open Content’ (getty.edu.>about>opencontent). It is a free opportunity to view hundreds of pieces of their collection, including photographs (there are a few rules to follow to access content). It is fascinating and if you are not careful you could get lost in your own personal museum for hours.
I discovered a photographer there that showed me how a specific focus could make learning about photographic techniques, fun. His name is Robert Kinmont (born 1937) and the focus of some of his photographs was not only nature but also included a person standing on their hands within the nature shot. I found that focus to be fascinating, humorous and surprisingly took me into the photo for a much longer period of time than I would have if it was just trees or a creek. Robert Kinmont chose people standing on their hands as a specific focus but you can choose cars, flowers, weddings, oceans, landscapes, pets, flying things, crawling things, sunsets – the list is infinite. According to Tom Ang (2008, Digital Photography Masterclass) as a novice it helps to focus on one or two things to photograph. A single focus can help you learn specific skills in digital photography.
The flower in the image to the right was taken by Bettye Austin, a member of CCC. One focus she works with is flowers and this image is in a style called High Key. To arrive at such a simplistic but elegant photo like this one, meant that she took thousands of images before that to learn how to capture the beauty of the one flower.
A fun journey. The other images are at novice level and my focus is nature at the moment. I hope you will pick up a camera and find your very own focus. Consider joining our club and see the adventurous side of creativity.