Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Signs, Signs... Telephoto Tuesday!

"Blended Right!"
(1/125 sec.@ F/7.1, ISO 160, 55mm fl, 55-200mm tele zoom VR, late morning light)

Right here in Hamilton I'm surrounded by art. Obviously we have art promoted to the masses, through the AGH or the James North Art Crawl to name a few. But wander down the right street or alley and you're faced with art on a larger scale and with definite purpose. Ads painted on the sides of retro cafes, old factories, and mom & pop shops will always stop me in my tracks. Always. Think about all the design work and branding, the use of color to draw your eye up way above the street, shapes that cause you to slow down to take it in better, and perfect text and wording to make you remember it long after you've moved on. Art at it's most practical, but art none the less.

And sometimes it's tricky to get the right shot of it. Usually the buildings are very close together in the downtown core, lighting is either harsh or almost nonexistent due to all the tall office buildings crowding out the sky, and if you try to shoot from across a city street you've got power lines and stop lights galore. You either find a way to make it work, or you walk away.

This was my dilemma last week when I was out on a walk downtown. I loved this wall. Who wouldn't? Great texture, great color, and aging nicely. But the street is tight, a fence keeps you out of the side alley, and the trees that shade the stores in front keep you from getting the entire sign when you move back. These are the days I wish photoshop applied to real life, cause I'd cut an' paste this sucker into a much easier location to shoot from if given the chance. Maybe there's an app for that?

Anyways, as I stood there trying all sorts of things to get a unique enough shot in the small amount of time I had, people passing me started slowing down to see what I was staring at, and so to avoid the unavoidable, "hey, you wanna take my picture sweetheart?" that always comes from some guy or other sitting on a step having his first drink of the day, I aimed the camera from down at my side having already set my exposure and shot part of the sign at an angle. Looked into my view screen, liked what I saw and moved on. Being female, and often out on my own, I've become very skilled at moving on. Not drawing attention to myself or my gear. Not taking very long to work a shot. Assess the subject, think hard about what I like, and get the shot.

And what do you think? Think it worked okay? I like it. In fact I may do a series, as this is not the first signage I've shot. This shot taken a couple years ago remains one of my best sellers. And I'm very much in city mode lately. Not sure why. But I like it.

So Google, Yahoo, Apple, and the rest of you... wanna get crackin' on that location transportation device app for photographers? Thanks. I know it'll be the next big thing eh.

Thanks for the ramble, and have a great Telephoto Tuesday folks!

No comments:

Post a Comment