Photo Tips: #2 – Why? No. 2

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In Tip #1, we touched on two key elements to consider when approaching photography:

1. Why am I taking this photograph?
2. How do I take this photograph in a way that conveys the why?

I asked you to start asking yourself: why am I taking this photograph?
What drew me to the scene before me that I feel compelled to document

Today, I want you go to a little deeper into that question. What is the main reason why I am taking this photograph? When others look at it, will they see why I took it or will they be confused? Should I show an entire scene or only a portion?
Looking at a waterfall, is the entire falls needed to convey what you see
or should you isolate a section?

All images tell a story. Merely viewing a photograph doesn’t always give
the extent of the image, but it should give the viewer a main idea of why you created the photograph. As you, the photographer, share how you
captured the image this can help others be drawn more to that image and give an even broader understanding.

As you photograph, pay careful attention to your why. Is that being
clearly expressed? It doesn’t have to be complex- the blue flower, the
girl’s expression, etc.
© Cristen J. Roghair
I photographed Mountain Gems at Willow Creek Falls in November of 2015.
The waterfall and ice crystals were the main reason why I took this photograph.

However, in order to capture the composition I wanted that isolated a small section of the falls with moss in the background and the ice crystals in the foreground I had to back track a little. I went back down the creek, crossed the water and climbed up a rock wall. I had to then go over the other side of the rock, being careful not to slip on the ice as I came to the location in which I shot this photograph. It ended up about 25 yards from where I originally stood, but I needed to relocate in order to compose the photograph to the vision I had in mind.

Hearing how a photographer captured a particular image is half the fun
of photography! There’s often an adventure involved that leads to a
greater appreciation for the photograph.

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