Sunday, August 23, 2009
Week 2: My inspiration for this shot was Imogen Cunningham. She was a photographer born in 1883 and passed away in 1976. She was well known for her botanical photography, along with nudes and other work.
She was influential in photography, helping start Group f/64, along with Ansel Adams, and 5 other photographers. This was a group that was pushing a new style of photography with precisely exposed images of natural objects found in nature. It was in contrast to the Pictorialism style that had been popular, which tried to emulate paintings.
I based this shot off of some of her botanical work she did in the early 20s or so. In particular I was trying to replicate something like: www.masters-of-fine-art-photography.com/02/artphotogaller...
Doing this shot I realize how much there is to learn about something as simple as a leaf or flower. How the structure of the leaf is formed, each ridge, vein, and the shape of the blade. How the light catches each little ridge and casts tiny shadows.
Often we see a simple picture of a leaf, and think "that is an easy shot to take", but what we forget is often the artist went to painstaking detail, examining the subject from every angle and lighting condition before ending up with the shot that fit their vision.
I went out for 2 hours in the morning, and although I got a lot of good shots, none were what I was looking for. I went back for another hour in the afternoon to a different location, and still didn't find what I was looking for, but I felt this was closest. I could probably spend an entire week photographing the leaf before finding something I was happy with.
I now have a lot more respect for something as simple as a leaf.
Posted by Eric Tastad at 8:12 AM