I wanted to continue with the attractions blog with more picture examples. As I was taking pictures yesterday at the forest preserve, I quickly found out that instead of taking pictures that attracted the user, I was taking pictures in which there were many distractions. Walking around the forest preserve my eyes were drawn to the dried out golden grass. Seemed like a cool concept to take a picture of. Took the initial shots to check my exposure settings, to make sure I was getting enough light and the shot was clear. That all seemed ok, but then I noticed, I was not getting what I saw. What do I mean? I got this picture in which everything just seemed clear, normal and clashing. I’m pretty sure the viewer of this photo doesn’t know what I’m trying to emphasize in this photo.

f/2.8, 1/250 sec, ISO-640

The subject of my picture(which was the grass) didn’t really stand out. So, I decided I’d get closer and take a picture which featured the grass more. I kept a low aperture(f-stop) in order to give the background more of blur(bokeh) effect to make the grass stand out more.

f/2.8, 1/100 sec, ISO-640

The trees still got in the background taking away from the grass. Next, I changed my angle.

f/2.8, 1/250 sec, ISO-640

This was better, because the person had a lot of the grass to look at though the trees were still in the background. Trying to use the concept of warm colors attracting the eyes, I adjusted the saturation(very noticeable  in the next picture to make it more golden than it actually was. I in return obtained this.

f/2.8, 1/250 sec, ISO-640

I also added vignetting to the picture above so that there are slightly darker corners which in theory should repel the eyes and draw them to the middle. I do like the over the top affects for some reason on this picture. While pretty much holding the camera inches above wet mud and taking the picture upward, I got another picture that I though looked cool. It made the sky more of a background rather than the trees. I turned this photo more bluish to see if I could get the feeling of winter across.

f/2.8, 1/250 sec, ISO-640

As I was walking around, I noticed a picnic table in water. Thought that would make a cool photo, so I tried to isolate it and took this.

f/2.8, 1/160 sec, ISO-640

There’s a piece of grass behind the table which was a rich green which I thought was taking away from the table. So what did I do? Cheated and made it black and white. I’m not artistic, just trying to cover up mistakes 🙂

It can definitely be tough trying to isolate your subject from the surroundings when taking a picture. But you do have tools to help you minimize the distractions. Try using a lower aperture to blur the background and make your subject stand out. Use post processing to either add color to your subject or remove color from the distraction. But the first thing to try is to move around the subject to see if you can easily avoid the distraction.

Inspiration: Philippians 4:8 – “Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.” It’s so easy to get distracted from what matters in life. Things try to crowd our lives pushing what we value most out. We need to at times refocus and crop out all that is unnecessary.

This entry was posted in Aperture, Background and tagged , , , .


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