8.16.2009

power lines and learning from peers

power lines

anyone who has has ever photographed with me knows how much i love to photograph power lines against the sky. there is just something about it that excites me. i've even convinced my photographer friend, aaron, to appreciate them more. he is a purest when it comes to nature or outdoor shots. he does not like to see anything man-made anywhere in his photo, because he thinks it takes away from the photo, the image, the view. so he strives to find shots where there is no evidence of man.


but i've made him see this a little bit differently since we met, and he now takes shots with power lines for the same reason i do—from an artistic point of view—seeing the lines and shapes they create and the movement and perspective they bring out. he even told me that he recently took a couple shots of power lines with my fondness of them in mind. i liked that. and they were really cool shots!


i've learned a lot from him, too. when i see his photographs of buildings, there is a sort of energy about them that i couldn't seem to capture when i took structural photos. so he taught me how he holds the camera and how he positions it against the lines of the building {which i am still practicing}. he also taught me to not be afraid to hold the camera low to the ground. i was always shooting from eye-level. but now i like to experiment because of him. i hold the camera up above my head, at the hip, or even down by the ground or on the ground.


something else he learned from me... he used to never take shots on an angle. he would joke around about my angled shots, and every time he would see one, he'd say, "it's crooked". but then... he started taking "crooked" shots as well. and now he loves to take them! {haha!}


this is the guy i bought my camera from, so he's also taught me other things, like some cool features that my camera has. i've used a couple of them here and there--mostly the color swap feature {where i made the sky purple or green instead of blue}.


it's fun to have someone to get excited about photography with. they make you see things in a new way, and hopefully you do the same for them. they teach you, and you teach them. you can look at each other's photos and get inspired. you can even go shooting with them—which i've had the opportunity to do with aaron and another friend on a couple of occasions.


it's the same reason i like the blogging community. i've learned from other photographers—for instance steve or meri {just to name a couple}. and i've had other photographers say they learned from me. how cool is that? all because of the internet. it's wonderful how it expands our knowledge and experience.


i want to constantly be growing in the art of photography, so i feel blessed to have people to learn from—not just teachers, but peers. in fact, i think i learn more from my peers than any photography teacher or class i have had or any photography book i have read. {not to discredit those things, because they are very important foundations for learning photography.} my friend aaron is just an amateur like me, but i really admire his photos.


do you have some photography buddies that you go on shoots with? do you just take pictures? or do you also get together to look at the other's photos and learn? i hope at least one of those, if not both, is true for you. i'm so glad it is for me.



{aaron shooting "on assignment" during our recent photography class/workshop}

14 comments:

Char said...

I love the photography classes I took and would love to get back to them. Yes, I think we can have fine photographs not ever taking classes - lots of well known photographers didn't....but I will say, the thing that improved my photography most of all with the classes is learning both the rules and breaking the rules. Learning what appealed to me. and the best of all, getting the live feedback from a group of people all trying to find their artistic eye. It was a beautiful thing.

I go out shooting sometimes with a group, sometimes with a friend, and a lot on my own. I like a bit of it all and I get different things from different occasions. Seeing through others' eyes, the adventures with a friend, and the zen meditation of being by myself.

beth said...

I would love to have someone to shoot with....but normally I'm on my own.

my hubby makes a great partner and someday I hope we have two cameras so we can shoot at the same time !....actually, that's a real life dream of mine...for us to partner up an shoot families on the beach !

and I love seeing how two people can be in the same area yet see things so differently from each other...

but for now...alone is the road I'm on :)

spread your wings said...

i love going on shoots with my daughter - it's interesting to see how differently we see things and it's often times some of most treasured time together. But I would like to branch out and have a new friend, a blogger friend perhaps, that i could go out with. to meet for coffee and then spend the day together shooting would be a treat for me.

i'm so behind on my blogging, especially my reading of blogs. i've missed yours so much and hope to catch up soon.

Hi Kooky said...

Okay, this may seem weird, but when I'm shooting, I don't like to talk or listen. It's like I turn off the think-y part of my brain and just go. BUT. I think it could be interesting to share photos and talk about them with someone else after the shoot. Interesting post!

Carolyn Ford said...

I also prefer nature shots without power lines or anything else man made. But, I do like to photograph them as their own subject, against a great sky and background.

DesBisoux said...

i like that something like power lines, which let's face it is not exactly pretty, turn into something so interresting and and actually beautiful!i guess it's always a matter of how you look at things. cool shots, thanks.xxx

Jamie said...

This is a really cool picture G. I love what you've done to the sky!

I don't really know "how" to shoot with other people. I've tried it before and enjoy seeing the finished pieces and how differently people see the same things. But, I don't know how to engage with other photographers when I'm shooting.

While it would probably terrify me, I think I'd really like to have my work critiqued by a group or in a class. I'm sure I'd learn a ton from that!

kath said...

My photography classes really push me. I had fun on the worldwide photowalk with a group of people I didn't know, but my favourite person to hang out with and take pictures with is my sister of course!

Steve Gravano said...

Thanks for the plug, Georgia. Many years ago my friend Perry and I use to go on photography outings all the time. Life happens, and both of us separated, I married and raised a family as a photographer, Perry traveled the world with the US Navy. After thirty years, we just got back together for one of our outings. It is funny how two people can look at the same thing and see something completely different. It's very helpful to have someone to bounce ideas off of and compare to. Both parties grow.

Steve Gravano said...

Oh.. I forgot to add, the power lines photo is awesome, I love the color and angle.

apriliniowa said...

That green sky sky paired with the power lines is otherworldly. Love it. But I've never taken a photography class or went on a photoshoot outing with friends. I actually don't have any friends that like to take pictures, now that I think about it! But it certainly sounds fun. I'd love to see the different perspectives regarding the same subject.

Liss said...

Georgia, I believe there is time and place for both trains of thought. I also believe it can be easy to capture beauty that stands in front of us but requires someone special to show us how beautiful the ordinary can be such as you have done with the photo of the power lines.

joyce said...

I've never taken a class....contrary as it may sound I don't feel like I'm "good enough".
What I can visualize though is Aaron tumbling into the water!

Oliag said...

The power line shot and the quote that you matched it with are perfect...I do like signs of mankind and the mess or beauty he/she makes...I thoroughly enjoyed the two short community-ed photography classes I took...it was fun getting to know other people in my town with similar levels of knowledge and it was fun going around shooting with them (except when it was freezing!)....We all hoped to get together after the class was over but no one ever took the lead in doing it...I hope to take another class soon...