turning your eye into a viewfinder

Turning your eye into a view finder By Barrie Smith – Eversure (Camera Insurance) Image by Snap2Art Some people will sometimes hold their hands in the shape of a frame and […]

Turning your eye into a view finder

By Barrie Smith – Eversure (Camera Insurance)
turning your eye into a viewfinder0
Image by Snap2Art

Some people will sometimes hold their hands in the shape of a frame and look through it to envisage what a specific scene will look like, such as a painting or a picture. Except for the fact that it really looks demented, a true artist, including the photographic enthusiast, should be able to visualise the picture without this gesture.

The art of visualising how a picture will look, before taking it, is a talent and as with all other talents, it gets improved with exercise. Obviously taking the actual picture in such a way that it looks like the image in your mind’s eye also requires knowledge of basic photographic principles. Examples of these are depth of field, as well as the settings of the specific camera being used.

A novice will walk through dry grassland and come out the other side with fifty pictures of dry grassland. The educated enthusiast will walk on the same path and come out the other end with five pictures of the grassland, three of a beautiful wild flower, barely visible through the grass, five pictures of a bright yellow grasshopper and a series of panoramic pictures of the complete grass field, brightly etched against the dark blue sky.

Photography is not only about enjoying taking pictures, or achieving to take striking ones, it is also the art of being attentive to the smallest details, identifying and visualising the magnificent and isolating it from the common. For instance, finding the one perfectly formed rose between the bunches of wilted ones; looking at bug gutted flowers, not turning away, but identifying the opportunity to find the bug and capturing it, while it is eating the flowers.

You are not necessarily a true photographer if you have an expensive camera or take a lot of pictures. Putting the crosshairs on my forehead from the “pros”, with making this statement, getting paid for pictures you take, in my opinion, furthermore does not make you a true photographer; it just makes you a picture seller. If you describe yourself as a professional photographer but photography is not your passion and you and your camera do not function as one, you are just another “happy snapper”. There are many amateur photographers who can run rings around some of the so called “pros”, as their pictures come more from their hearts rather than from their cameras.

Gravel Road Leading to Dam

In my view you are a photographer if you, without a camera, can micro in on a small object, wide angle over a landscape or zoom in to a unique scene, perfectly framed, just needing to press the button. You are a photographer when you get excited by just picking up your camera. If you already have this feeling but are still struggling to use your eyes as viewfinders, just keep on learning, reading and practising as you are already on your way to become a true photographer.

About the Author

Barry Smith
Passionate photographer who is blessed with the opportunity to discuss and take photos every day whilst working for the camera insurance company, Eversure.


About Christian Tudor

professional photographer, main editor at Academy of Photography and