Photographic Fundamentals

My first photographic inspiration years ago was an exhibit by Ansel Adams at the Art Institute in Chicago. The photography gallery is under the main stairs as you walk into the Art Institute. The images were all Black & White. Most of them were 8×10  prints mounted with white museum board mats. This is the traditional museum method of mounting photographic prints, unless it is displayed differently by the photographic artist. Adams is known for his photography of the National Parks our West.  He also did commercial work, but he is most noted for his outdoor photography.

I borrowed my first camera which had a fixed lens and used film.  It doesn’t seem that long ago when I would have film in the freezer and nothing else.  The best description of film is that it was perishable and had a shelf life like dairy products. Kodak at that time used vegetable dies on the prints.  That is why your old color photographs fade when subjected to uv-light and high humidity.  Thanks Kodak. Black and white prints have a silver base and are less effected by uv-light.  I am not sure how long the prints we are making now will last.  I do frequent a Gallery in Santa Fe New Mexico which displays metal prints outside and they don’t seem to fade.

After taking many classes and reading as much information about photography.  I purchased more sophisticated equipment. I learned there were wide angle, perspective control, telephoto, and zoom lenses.  So many choices, each with a specific purpose. I bought all the wrong lenses, cameras, tripods etc. I have learned how to photograph with less equipment and still get stunning images. The cameras in out telephones are amazing.  There are so many apps and programs available it makes my head spin. I usually rely on someone else trying them out and then I jump in.  It is important to learn how to photograph and not become so enamored with equipment and focus on capturing the image.  I am often asked what I photograph.   “Light and Shadows”  Thats what inspires me.  Remember its the Wizard and not the Wand!