Brenda’s A Photo Study: Negative Space

This is my submission for Brenda’s A Photo Study: Negative Space.

Many years ago, one friend showed me several of his friend’s paintings. He flipped through each one, and kept telling me how wonderful they were. At first, I wanted to be polite. I told him they were pretty good. Seeing the fourth painting, I couldn’t stand it any longer. “They are good, but I don’t think I like them,” I said, still trying to be polite.

Later I told another friend what had happened. I used the word “suffocating” to describe how I felt on that day, and told her I didn’t really know why I felt that way. My friend said, “Do you know that Chinese paintings usually have a lot of white space, and many western paintings don’t?” (Ah ha!)

Gradually, I learned to appreciate paintings without any white space and learned to appreciate white space (negative space) even more.

The first photo was taken with 300 mm focal length. The goose was far away, but seeing through the viewfinder, I felt she was looking straight at the camera.

In the middle of taking neighbor’s boy’s photo, I saw the moon and the treetop. I quickly took several shots. Standing quietly next to me, the boy looked up to the moon. He kept staring… at that moment, I felt we were connected.

I was having fun playing with light for the next 3 photos. I didn’t really get the effect I wanted. I will keep trying for sure.

Thanks Brenda for another good lesson. I truly appreciate it.

Thank you for visiting my blog.

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A Warm Day and a Cold Night

We had one 50+ degree day a week ago (or two?). People who live in this area know that we should appreciate it, enjoy it and take it as it is and not expect anything more. Sure enough, next day was around 30 degrees (below?).

We did go out on that warm day. A part of the river started melting.

Fishermen were out.

Some preferred ice fishing.

And there was this lonely boat.

A blue moon showed up a few days later. It was a cold night; we didn’t go far; two steps onto our deck, that was all 😉

Not every day can be a warm day; not every day is cold. However, every day is a gift.

Thanks for visiting my blog.

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Brenda’s A Photo Study: Abstract Photography

This is my submission for Brenda’s A Photo Study: Abstract Photography.

For many years, whenever I saw an abstract painting, I felt intimidating. It’s just a black canvas, isn’t it? Why is it hanging on the wall at this museum? What’s there to see? I didn’t get it, and frankly, it didn’t bother me a lot that I didn’t get it.

I was surprise how much I liked abstract photos. I guess it is because abstract photos are not totally abstract. I mean they are based on real (not abstract) subjects. Since I know they do exist in real form, I don’t have a need to question why they exist, so I can focus on seeing their beauty. (Make sense?)

First photo was taken at a dental office’s parking lot. I wonder if they knew how it would look like on snowing day before they built this wall.

One side of Zumbro River …

A different view of Minnehaha Regional Park… 😉

As always, I checked around on the Internet, and this time I found: ABSTRACT PHOTOGRAPHY TUTORIAL – Macro Photography Challenge Using Spoons. After seeing that video, I took the following photo.

Brenda said, “I’ve come to understand abstract/non-representational imagery as an absence of the type of discrimination and labeling process that seeks an answer to, ‘what is that?’ to one that invites the viewer to explore, ‘what feelings does this image evoke?’”

Ah… I think I am ready to go back to the museum to take another look at those abstract paintings! Thanks, Brenda!

Thank you for visiting my blog.

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Brenda’s A Photo Study: Shutter Speed

Here is my submission for Brenda’s A Photo Study: Shutter Speed.

Brenda explains shutter speed well in her post. I appreciate how she is able to present the subject in such a thorough and yet easy-to-understand way.

After reading Brenda’s post, one thing came to mind was panning. Last time when I was playing with shutter speed, I didn’t have a chance to take a panning photo. So, you can imagine how excited I was when I saw neighbor’s boy was outside riding his bike. 😉


1/30 Sec. (Panning)

After letting me take several photos, he went on jumping on his trampoline. The shutter speed for next two photos is 1/1600 Sec.)

(Thank you, Western! You are my superstar!)

Last, I am amazed at how good iPhone camera is. All I did was pressing the button; I didn’t even try to focus on anything! And I got this photo. (Not a beautiful photo; still, I was surprised at how easy it was to take a photo of a moving subject.)


1/2183 Sec. (What a number! 😉

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Brenda’s A Photo Study: Rule of Space

This is my attempt for Brenda’s A Photo Study: Rule of Space.

Ted Forbes, in Rule of Space, said, “The Rule of Space is simply a technique that creates a sense of motion, activity or conclusion in your composition. It simply involves creating negative space that relates to your subject.”

He also said (in his video), “Negative space is a space with very low activity… The rule of space is to balance your subject with this negative space.”

I took this first photo while walking on the Douglas Trail. I had my phone ready to shoot soon after I arrived and kept it ready for a long time, but after seeing many gray or black jackets passing by, I put my phone away. And guess what?

The next photo was shot by a frozen lake. Ice was already melted on some part of the lake. These two guys must know something that I don’t.

One cold day we managed to go out to take some sunset photos.

The last photo was taken a couple of years ago. I miss that little girl who didn’t care if there was a camera pointing at her or not. Do parents really have to teach kids how to pose in front of cameras?

Thank you for visiting my blog.

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Brenda’s Photo Study: Tempo

This is my submission for Brenda’s A Photo Study: Tempo.

I knew it! Tempo follows rhythm — it’s logical, but I was hoping it wouldn’t happen this way. 😉

This time, I couldn’t even get helps from google. The word “Tempo” is often used to describe “Rhythm”. For example, in Elements of Art, Rhythm is describes as “A principle of design that indicates movement, created by the careful placement of repeated elements in a work of art to cause a visual tempo or beat.” Doesn’t it sound like if a photo has rhythm, it has tempo, too?

And, in Ted Forbes’ Tempo in Visual Composition and Photography video, he does use several photos he showed in his Rhythm video as tempo examples.

These rhythm and tempo exercises remind me of my golf lesson. After listening to my instructor for a while and watching him demonstrating how to hit a ball several times, I was still not able to hit the ball correctly. Both of us were frustrated. I finally said, “Numbers! Can’t you give me some numbers?”

“What numbers?” he said.

“How much do I bend my upper body? 25 degrees? 30? How far do I turn my body? 45 degrees? Numbers like that! I need numbers!”

Well, after he managed to come up with some numbers, I was doing much better. 😉

Hmm… maybe there are numbers that go with rhythm and tempo, too… Before figuring it out what numbers I need, I guess I just have to wing it. (By the way, I enjoy Brenda’s photos a lot. I think she knows this subject well.)

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Brenda’s Photo Study: Rhythm I

This is my submission for Brenda’s A Photo Study: Rhythm I.

Rhythm in visual art is probably the most difficult subject to comprehend for me. More and more, I realize that things I can’t see in my head are harder for me to understand. And rhythm is one of them.

After reading Brenda’s post and watching Ted’s video (link on Brenda’s post) a couple of times, I became concerned, because I didn’t fully understand what they said. As usual, I started googling like crazy. Reading several articles later, I still didn’t quite get it. That’s when I decided to go back to the basic: (1) what is rhythm in music (I thought I knew, but maybe I didn’t.) (2) how does one apply rhythm in visual design (not in photography, but in art design).

I am happy to say that I finally did find an article and a video that helped me to grasp the concept.

Article “Rhythm in Art”: “The concept of rhythm in art represents the easy movement of the viewer’s eyes following a regular arrangement or reproduction of elements in the art work.”

Ah-ha, I totally understand “the easy movement of the viewer’s eyes”! 😉

Video: Beat and Rhythm Explained

This simple video helps me to remember what rhythm is.

I feel exhausted, but I am very happy. Can you sense the beat and rhythm in my words? 😉

Thank you for visiting my blog.

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