Thursday, October 29, 2009

CI - Field Trip 1

When I first heard we were going to the Zoo I wasn't all that enthusiastic as I'd just been there a few days before shooting for another assignment. This time instead of going alone I'd be with my fellow classmates, which was cool. There actually ended up being a few things outside that I shot that I didn't get my first time around. However the hi-lite of this trip was the Tropical Center. I'd actually missed it the first time around and boy did I have a blast in there. There was so many things to shoot and experiment with different styles of shooting and playing around with different white balances.

The Aquariums were really neat and it felt like I was really in a different World shooting under the ocean. You'll never get the same shot twice and there's just so many interesting and strange things to shoot. Experimenting with shutterspeeds, different focal lengths also added a lot of differences to the photos. The whole tropical center was like a tropical paradise with many different animals and fauna. Definitely a photographers dream, also it was nice in warm in there as well. I could have spent so much time in there but it was getting time to go to get home and get the photos uploaded.

The trip actually turned out to be much more fun than when I went the first time. The only thing is I forgot to go to the section with the bats... next time.

Monday, October 19, 2009

AT 6.2 - Photographic Hero: Robert Doisneau

My choice for Photographic hero is Robert Doisneau. A French photographer born in Paris in 1912. He passed away in 1994 and was most famous for his "street photography" in Paris from the late 30's through to the 50's which often had a humorous outlook to them. He originally trained as Lithographer but switched over to Photography in 1929 in which he was self-taught. Robert became a freelance photographer in 1939 and was drafted to the French Army and served until 1940, upon returning he continues his freelance photography. During this period he used a Rolleiflex camera and later also used Leica cameras. Doisneau did high-society and fashion photography for Paris Vogue from 1948 to 1951. In the 60's he travelled to the States to shoot in Hollywood & Palm Springs and later that decade made his way to the USSR to work for the magazine Working Life. The last part of his career was mostly shooting in and around Paris. Over his career he also won several awards, two of them being the Kodak Prize (1947), the Niepce Prize (1956), and the Balzac Prize (1986). Most of his prints were developed using the gelatin silver process and were mostly done on 12" x 16" and 16" x 20".

As you can see below there are a few photographs from his earlier work from the 50's, which I will talk about...

Le baiser de l'hôtel de ville (Kiss by the Hôtel de Ville) (1950)
From AT 6.2 Photographic Hero

This is probably Doisnau's most famous and most recognizable photograph. There's a lot going on within the foreground and background of the image but Robert managed very well to keep the focus on the couple in the middle of the frame. I believe he would have used a slightly slower shutterspeed in order to get a slight motion blur effect for the people around the couple. There's some really good use of Depth of Field in the photo which also adds to the focus on the couple. You still recognize everything in the photo even though some elements of the forground and background are slightly out of focus. I think it's a great use of natural light and I also think that by cropping the left and right sides (which cropped the people) it made you focus more on the center of the image as well and put more attention on the subject. It's really interesting how he captured the chaotic life of the streets of Paris yet made everything slow down to the couple kissing which made it almost seem like they were the only two people in the World. Definitely a very effective photo and I could understand why it's arguably his most famous photo.

Hell (1952)
From AT 6.2 Photographic Hero

One of Robert's more gothic type photos which if you see more of his work there are other great photos he did that have a darker type of mood or subject. Some of Robert's work was staged but I'm pretty sure this is a candid photo. I'd imagine Robert (as he was known to do) would stay in one place for many hours throughout the day to capture that one perfect image, I think he succeeded here. Although it could be debated what the subject actually is, the man in uniform walking or the giant monster sculpted into the wall behind him? I'd like to think that each compliments the other and the photo would not be as effective without both. There's no motion blur on the man walking so I'm sure a faster shutter speed was used. The photo is extremely well framed and he captured everything you need to see (I even like that he got a gargoyle in the top right corner). The use of framing really makes you focus on his subject and nothing else. I really like the contrast of the whites, greys and blacks it really makes the photo "pop". The photo is rather kind of creepy but at the same time humorous.

Information Scholaire (1956)
From AT 6.2 Photographic Hero

This photo is pretty funny and one of Robert's more humorous photos I've seen from him. Again, I really like the use of natural lighting coming from the windows. You can tell from the side lighting of the boy in the foreground that there was a window to his left. It's almost like there is a spotlight on him and everyone else is sort of in the shadows, which makes you really focus on the main subject in this photo. It's easy to tell that the setting is a classroom and it looks like there is a test. It's hilarious that the boy next to him is peaking over at his board while the main boy looks to be trying very hard to come up with an answer. I really like the use of Depth of Field here as well which gives more focus on the foreground. The framing looks to be very good to me, my only complaint may be that the photo looks slightly underexposed and that maybe the window in the background is a bit distracting. Although I think he wanted the boys face to be one of the brightest things as to grab the viewers attention to it.

Over the course of doing research and getting to check out a lot of Robert's photos I've really enjoyed getting to know this photographer and really like his work. I hope to do more street photography in the future and Robert is definitely a huge inspiration for those that want to do something similiar. He was a really accomplished photographer and I think something to aspire to.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Sunday, October 4, 2009

CI - Composition At Home

When I started this assignment I actually found it hard to get motivated or find inspiration so I left it for a day or two. I did a little research online to find some examples of the required shots we had to get. It did help some but I found by just relaxing more I found that I found much more objects and things around the house that I need to shoot. Things I never really would have thought of before probably? Of all the things on our list to shoot I actually found texture the most difficult, maybe it was simply because there's not a lot of things in the house that have much texture or maybe I'm not fully comprehending what could be considered something with texture. Anyway, it was an interesting assignment and opened my eyes to new ways of shooting photography.


From Composition at Home

Shape or Form

From Composition at Home

Pattern or Rythm

From Composition at Home


From Composition at Home

Symmetrical Balance

From Composition at Home


From Composition at Home