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Old Jul 13, 2005, 12:01 AM   #1
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This should be a fun exercise and a "challenging" one for many. It might even prove quite difficult. This challenge was actually suggested by my wife for she and I to try. I have adapted it for the forum.

You will need an assistant to help you with this one.

I have long believed that a good photographer can find a good picture anywhere, in any situation. This challenge is an attempt to find out if I'm right or wrong and to find out if you are as good a photographer as you think you might be.

Basically the premise of this challenge is to have a friend or significant other choose a location where they think you could not possibly find anything to photograph. This person then drives or takes you by public transit to the selected location and points out or delineates the "playing field". You then search out and photograph anything that you think is "worthy"

There are some rules that you should follow to make this fair to everyone else:

Don't go to:
  1. A landfill or garbage dump

    A stockyard or animal feedlot

    Private Property (without permission)

    Any Restricted or posted security area
Do not photograph:
  1. The vehicle you traveled in

    Anything brought to the scene with you

    The companion who picked the spot
Other "Rules"
  1. Stay within 60 ft (20 meters) of spot designated by companion or within boundaries delineated by fences or building walls.

    Time limit -- One hour

    Photos must be shot within the designated area but one photo of a subject located outside the area but shot within the area will be accepted.

    Shoot one wide-angle view of the area for reference and include that shot with any others that you post.
Hints for making this work and learning from it:
  1. When you arrive at the chosen location, stand in one spot and just look around for a few minutes. You can take your wide-angle shot at this point.

    Spend a few minutes walking around the location to get a better look at what is there.

    Look for obvious things to shoot.

    Look for hidden subjects.

    Look for patterns or textures.

    Look at light, color, shadows, etc.

    Notice how the light plays on objects in your shooting location.

    Consider macro, telephoto, and wide angle shots.

    Look up. Look down. Look behind you.

    Look for things that are out of place or don't belong such as footprints, litter, graffiti, broken glass (be careful!) etc.

    Look for wildflowers and other living things.
This is an exercise in "Seeing the Picture" . It is testing and honing your ability to see a photograph in your mind and then shoot it. A few days ago, I started a new, anchored, thread titled "Recommended Reading". In the opening post, I discuss a book titled "The Art of Seeing". If you can locate a copy of the book to purchase or find a copy in your public library, read it a couple times. The entire book is dedicated to developing a "photographer's eye", the ability to see a photograph. It may prove to be the most important photography book you'll ever read.

Now go out and See the Picture. As usual please put "Seeing" or "See the Picture" in your subject line. Since this topic may take more time than previous topics, it may be extended for an extra week, if needed.

Cal Rasmussen
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