Digital Photography for Beginners – Lesson Three
Week 3 of our 6 week course with Carole Niven, Berkhamsted based Photographer and Artist, and another thoroughly enjoyable class.
Our homework from week 2 was to take photographs of groups of 2, 3 and 4 people, using the tips Carole had given us for composition, ie, to balance height, colour of clothes, hair, light and background etc.
Following the disappointing ‘could do better’ from the previous week, I had planned an afternoon with friends to take the 2′s and 3′s group shots and also took my camera to the local Berkhamsted Book Club, held monthly at The Old Mill Pub, to capture the groups of 4. I have to say it was really good fun, looking for different types of shots, backgrounds and actually thinking about the composition of the photograph rather than just my normal ‘point and shoot’ which, of course, was the purpose of attending the classes in the first place! Excellent, so half way through the course and I’ve already met my objectives. Upwards and onwards!
The example here represents the ‘diamond’ shape that one can create with groups of 4 people, as opposed to the shallow upside down ‘V’ for 3 people featured last week. Thanks to Kathy, Dorrie, Janet and Helen for helping me with my homework!
As per the normal format of the class, we reviewed everyone’s efforts first, with Carole pointing out errors and suggesting improvements. I find this to be a very useful exercise as we all join in, asking questions and seeking guidance. Top Tip: Carole suggested we try and avoid ‘models’ putting their arms around each other, as this can create ‘sausage fingers’ on the arm or a gaping jacket. It also widens the body of one and crushes the body of another. Interesting stuff!
After tea and biscuits (pre-requisite!) we move onto the next project; to photograph a vase of flowers without including the vase! Carole gave us the direction to start with, enabling us to practice in a safe environment with Carole on hand to answer any questions. My Canon IXUS has a macro digital function, which I’ve never played with before, so some interesting results! We needed to adjust the ISO settings to allow for greater light. However, as this also determines the film speed, the higher the ISO setting, the more ‘noise’ or ‘grain’ you will have on your images, so again, it was about balance, to achieve the best effect. Our homework for the next week therefore was to practice this newly learnt technique.
Looking forward to reviewing my homework with Carole, hopefully it will be equally as positive next week!
Plus, look out for my ‘knobs & knockers’ blog. All in the name of photography…!
Have a good week, Alison