Technique

I have an odd relationship with photographic technique. I don’t eschew it but it doesn’t reign me in.

Some years ago I used to work with an ex-physics teacher who saw the camera as a piece of precision equipment, and he would only take photos accordingly. Now he took some great photos, but he could see straight away that the *logarithmic reciprocity of the inverse square would mean the depth of field would be negative in relation to the positive* so often he wouldn’t bother even taking the camera out of the case. Whereas I would be thinking how I could put the lens on back to front to see what it would look like.

From time to time I will learn a lesson or a piece of practical technique which is not worth ignoring and I will bear it in mind. I’m also very mindful of the hours that the camera and film designers put into making these wonderful precision devices, even the plastic toy cameras. But there are aesthetic lessons to learn too as well as personal territory to explore, and the end result with the camera is all part of trying to be authentic to who I am.

I’ve started doing a ceramics evening class and one of my favourite YouTube potters always signs off with “keep practising!” and I love that idea. Publishing photos is as much a part of practising for me as taking the camera out in the first place.

* being slightly ironic here (he never really said exactly that).

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