Friday, February 6, 2009
This puppy was very patient with me...
I finished my first college photography class today. It might not seem like such a big feat, since most of you have taken many years of college and other specialty courses.
However, I haven't taken any kind of official schoolin' since cell phones were the size of boom boxes.
So, convincing my brain to retain any type of new information that wasn't offered via "Ellen" or "Chelsea Lately" was a challenge.
But, in the past couple of years, I've really started to get back into photography and, since I'd only ever taken photos on the automatic settings of any camera, thought it might be beneficial for me to learn how to use the dreaded manual settings that all real photographers use.
Color wheels and aperture/shutter speed settings aside...I think I actually learned a thing or three.
Like...when leaning against a wall to take a photo of, say, statuary (for my "Texture" assignment), it's wise to check for large trails of ants that might also be using the wall as a favorite travel route.
Thankfully that was a "dance" witnessed by only myself, the ants and the Korean lady next door.
Trust me, I checked this wall very well for wildlife before asking Oscar to pose later for my "Portraits" assignment.
I also enjoyed checking him very well...for balanced lighting.
I'm very professional with my models.
I took this photo behind an old rundown carwash.
What I learned from that was...when entering a fragrant outdoor carwash restroom, it's best to make sure the camera that you have slung over your shoulder doesn't slam into the doorframe as you try to slide casually in without using your fingers to touch any part of the bacteria-ridden doorknob.
While attempting my "Pan Motion" assignment (having to shoot something in motion, while having the background blurred, but the subject clear), I learned that it's best to smile a lot when you're taking random photos of complete strangers out enjoying their day.
It lessens the chance that one of them will turn around and attempt to punch you in the neck or lower regions.
I also learned, while doing my "Peak Motion" assignment (freezing a subject during a peak action...not easy at all), that skateboarders must be made of steel, fiberglass or Dippity Doo...
Because I can think of no other explanation that would detail how they are able to leap, twirl, and flip high in the air and then come crashing down on their elbows, knees, and heads (without one of them losing a face-plate, like the Fembots on the "The Bionic Woman"), then get right back up, laugh...and do it all over again.
It's insanity I tell ya'....insanity!
So, my first quarter is finished and, since I actually learned something, I've decided to take the advanced photography class that starts next week.
Of course, that depends on how I did on the final photography project and the written test we took today (I hate tests).
However, as a personal milestone, I was actually able to figure out the YouTubes that all the kids have been using lately and, without the aid of a full team of technicians standing right beside me, uploaded my final photography assignment (below) to the Interwebs.
We had to do a project based on a word of theme, so I chose "Curve"...subjects or locations that had a curved element somewhere in frame.
I'm no Ansel Adams or Olan Mills yet...
But, I'm tryin'.