Taking Photographs vs Photographing is about how fast you photograph. The digital camera has made it very cheap for us to photograph. We do not think about what we are seeing. We click, click, click and click, we look at the images, we delete a whole bunch of images without enlarging any. We continue to click away. We delete more images. It's almost like watching TV. It's mindless. No, actually, it's thought-less.
Photographing is meditative. You look. Slow down access, think, feel the place and frame in your mind before even picking up the camera. You have to be in the place, in the present and look around you.
Do not start thinking about the infamous shopping list or the text message that irritated you yesterday. Did I mention to turn off the phone? Really, put it away!
So, continuing: I look at the quality of light first. I look at the areas that are in the shade and the areas that are in the sun. What is the best white balance for me to use? (more on this another day, as you can custom white balance and then you will have great color quality)
I do a light assessment: Is there too much contrast? Are the highlights too bright? Is this the right time of the day to photograph this specific area? As I walk, I look at the different angles that I can do and where the light is coming from.
This puts me in a different frame of mind. I connect to the place that I am photographing. My camera is near me and I do not lift it to check anything. I'm looking and enjoying the place that I am at.
I know that my camera can connect to this place, any place. But if I do not connect, the image will look like, well anything. It will lack my thoughts and ideas, my presence, my creativity. So then it could be anyone's photograph.
As I walk around, I lift my hands and make a frame with my fingers imitating the frame of the camera. I take an ant's point of view and a bird's point of view. I probably look a bit foolish but that does not matter. Later I will have a fabulous photograph!
Once I decide what I want to photograph and which angle to use, I immediately look behind me and usually that is the best view!
It's like everything in life. You make a plan, you calculate, you save money to do that and then life takes you in the opposite direction and that is usually the most interesting journey.
Photographing is the same thing. Make all the plans you want.
Why not, planning can be fun! Get ready to go in the opposite direction.
I believe that photography is a language. It's a visual game. It how we can express ourselves.