Wednesday, May 28, 2008

It's Not the Lens

Moose Filter Test #1
Originally uploaded by Dalantech.
It’s pretty common for someone to look at my work and then compliment me on the gear that I have. It use to bother me because it’s like going to someone’s house, enjoying a really good meal, and then complimenting the cook on their pots and pans. But I don’t let it get to me anymore because every time someone tells me that I have a great lens I know that their work will never compete with mine…

To be really good as a photographer you have to understand light, that it has different qualities, and how to take advantage of the light when it’s good or modify it when it’s bad. The light, more than any other aspect, will make or break an image. Given the choice between great light and an average lens or terrible light and a great lens I’ll choose the former every time –the resulting images will be infinitely better.

Granted I’d rather have great light and gear because I’ll have to do less post processing, and I think that’s what motivates some people to compliment others on their equipment.

Another important aspect of photography is knowing how to use the gear that you have, so you don’t have to rely heavily on post processing. The computer with never be able to replace data that you do not capture with the camera –it will never be that smart. So there’s a lot to be said for getting it right with the view finder and doing the majority of your post processing before you press the shutter release Take the image included with this post: I used a warming polarizing filter to get the detail you see in that dragonfly –something that isn’t possible with the filters in Photoshop…

In other news: If you've asked me for my help and I haven't gotten to you yet please be patient -I wasn't expecting the huge response that I got to my mentoring offer! I will get to you though, promise :)
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