In this blog, I’m going to discuss some the techniques I’ll be using and as such what you can expect to see from my photography this year.
Black and White
As I mentioned in my last blog, I want to shoot a lot more sunrises. The problem with sunrises is that you wake up when it’s still dark and determining the cloud cover and how it will affect your photos can be a little difficult at that time of day. So when the sky doesn’t open up with vibrant colours, black and white is sometimes the answer, and this is what happened when I took this shot at Mentone beach yesterday morning.
Last year I purchased some Neutral Density filters which are really just pieces of tinted glass. They’re kind of sunglasses for your camera that allow you to take longer exposures. This is great for water and clouds. It can either bring smoothness to water or create motion within it depending on the length of the exposure and the speed of the water. I really love these types of images and under the right conditions can bring a painterly look to images.
I have had a little taste of shooting stars but haven’t taken it too far. A few years back on a sailing trip from Geelong to Melbourne one evening I got to experience the Milky Way. There isn’t much light pollution in the middle of the bay and the sky was amazing, I’d really love to capture it. This year I’m going to get my butt into gear and do it. I have a couple of locations in mind so stay tuned for this.
This is technique used at twilight or night. It involves using a torch to ‘paint’ light on the subject. I did this once when I was in Alaska, it’s how I captured the hut for those of you that know the photo. I’ve been wanting to do it again but haven’t found the right subject to use. I’m on the lookout this year to find subjects for this, I even have some coloured gels to put in front of the torch to create some different and interesting images.
Day time exposures
I used to think that the best time of day was when the sun was just below the horizontal (either just before sunrise or just after sunset) because that’s when the colours in the sky are the most vibrant. Well, that’s not always true because the sky can change so much in the space of an hour. I have even been noticing that people are capturing great cityscape and seascape images during the day… a time when a landscape photographer wouldn’t typically be shooting. Furthermore, on a cloudy day you can get some interesting light when the sky opens up and casts beams of light down. This can generate some great contrast. I’m setting myself the challenge this year to capture some great day time exposures. I’ll typically be using Neutral Density filters to create long exposures and also hope to capture some interestingly lit images.
I hope to buy an infrared filter soon. These filters capture the infrared light, that part of the spectrum we can not see with our eyes. I’ll be still be shooting landscapes, you’ll just see them with a completely different look.
I’m at war with myself on this technique. A big part of me thinks it’s cheating too much but another part of me knows that some great images can be make using this technique. It’s when you capture numerous images over a time period (in the one day) such as sunset, twilight and evening. You blend the best parts of each time of day to create one image. I once heard someone say that that whole time frame is really beautiful and he wants to showcase the whole experience in one photo. Whether it’s cheating or not, I’m going to experiment with it and see how I go.