I have never done this before, but I feel if I am sharing my photography with you then maybe I should also share other stuff. One of the things I thought I would share is one of my favourite magazines.
I have read “Better Photography” on and off since it was first published. I have always found it to have really helpful articles and the publication and printing is superb, It is only printed quarterly, so it is good value for your money.
The editor, Peter Eastway, is an amazing photographer and I have admired his work for many years. I love his landscapes and can’t help seeing that what he does in his work is influencing what I am doing myself. I also appreciate that his magazine represents what is happening now in photography, but also teaches lessons from the past. You can still find articles in it about using film and processing images in the darkroom.
I have found in the past, with other publications, that once you have been through a yearly subscription that you have pretty much seen everything they have to offer and from then on it is just repeated. I have never found that with “Better Photography”, or if it is then it is cleverly disguised.
In the current issue there are articles about many things, you can see them on the cover above. There is a mixture of articles about equipment, interviews with famous photographers, and information on how to improve your photography from other photographers,.
I was especially interested in this article as creating fine art photography is what I am also trying to do. The author of the article, Nick Melidonis, is ” Master of Photography and a triple recipient of the AIPP ‘Australian Professional Landscape Photographer of the Year’ award.” It says a lot more about him, but generally it sounds like he knows what he is talking about. He has credibility, which is good.
His article gives “10 Tips For Creating A Masterpiece”. He gives quotes from other photographers and philosophers, and his article was good. I really enjoyed reading it and I did get quite a bit out it. I find the concept of what is a fine art photograph to a normal image somewhat strange. I know that the people who were studying photography at uni would come up with some very strange things, and I always wondered how what they did was fine art, when I thought it was crap, but that is just my opinion. I had started to think that perhaps the world of fine art was one that I couldn’t fit into, however when Nick started explaining his tips, I started to realise that I do understand what it is and I can produce that type of work. Thanks for that Nick.
It is not my intention here to give you what the article says, I think if you are interested you should see about getting the magazine yourself. I will give you a link to it at the end of this post, but I did want to copy one small section, something Nick said about Ansel Adams, we all know who he is, one of the most famous landscape photographers ever. So a direct quote:
Express What You See and Feel
When I’m ready to make a photograph, I see in my mind’s eye something that is not literally there in the true meaning of the word. I’m interested in expressing something that is built up from within rather than extracted from without. – Ansel Adams
Interpretation of an image often involves pre-visualisation in the sense that the artist is seeing the end result or a variation of the potential of the final image while the initial capture is taking place. The great landscape photographer, Ansel Adams, expressed the fact that he rarely depicted a documentary record of the image he say in a literal sense, rather he had a vision of where he wanted to take the image that was quite different from the scene in from of him. As a master darkroom printer, he manipulated his image with creative dodging and burning, Farmer’s Reducer and so on, to create images that never existed in nature, and yet, even today, ‘traditional’ photographers scoff at digital enhancement and accuse the authors of ‘cheating’ if any digital enhancement is evident.
I really liked that part. I hate the way photographers who use Photoshop or other digital imaging software are called cheaters. Manipulation of images has been done since photographs were first taken and printed in darkrooms. Now images are made digitally, so why shouldn’t they be manipulated digitally? I have to say too, as someone who has been trying to use Photoshop for quite a few years, it is a new skill in itself, and it should be rewarded, not penalised. Great article Nick.
I haven’t completely read this article yet. I do tend to take my time reading this magazine. I like to be able to concentrate on what I’m reading, and I can take the full 3 months to devour it. I do like photographing architecture and having taken a quick look through, I knew this was an article that I would have to read.
The other night I was at a friends house and she wanted to watch “Australia’s Next Top Model”, I don’t mind the show, as it about taken photos, I find it is great. I love watching the set-up for the photographers. My excuse anyway. The episode featured the last three standing, and they went to Dubai.
I had seen the article in “Better Photography” and I knew that some of the photos were from Dubai, so when the models went there, I wanted to watch and see the architecture. I have decided that on my list of places to go, I really want to go there. I think you will be seeing more architecture in my shots from now on.
The article tells us about how the photographer, Tim Griffith, captures his images and how he works. It also talks about the equipment that he uses and how he uses it. I’m looking forward to finishing it.
Now I promised some links, well just one, the one for the magazine. You can get a hard copy subscription, or you can get PDF files of the magazine. I can’t recommend it enough.
Better Photography - Check it out.