From The Hip
Our last photography class assignment , from Dave at dp studios, was to spend a day shooting from the hip. It's true; most people change their demeanor as soon as they see you pull the camera up to your eye. So we were focusing on capturing expressions, stories, glimpses of normalcy. He gave us two weeks to see what we could come up with and left it wide open for interpretation. Pre-focus or not, portrait or landscape, color or black and white, street level or not; you get the idea. He suggested we use our widest angle lens, and subsequently created an even greater desire in me to save up for something wider than my 50! (I knew I shouldn't have ever borrowed that 35mm f/1.2.) Here are a few images I caught by just wearing my camera around my neck and unobtrusively snapping away as life happened around me. Since I was taking shots of kiddos, I chose not to pre-focus (no way would I be able to keep them 6-10 feet from me!). Instead I just changed my camera's auto-focus from single point (which I usually use) to a wider zone and just let the camera take a guess as to what should be in focus! I did, however, keep it in manual mode since I was in one spot with pretty constant lighting and not moving around. I took one test shot, adjusted my shutter speed for proper exposure and then left it there. If I were out and about, though, I would have changed it to aperture mode, set my aperture to about 5.6 or so and then let the camera choose the shutter speed. I also chose to keep my aperture at f/2.2. Pretty narrow depth of field for this type of thing, but I did not want to use a flash and I needed a faster shutter speed to catch kids in this low light. Plus, it makes it that much more challenging to focus without using the viewfinder!
I caught this series as my daughter went to hug a little boy that was not her little brother. Not cool from Brooks' point of view...
(Yes, I know my kids are wearing matching shirts. No, I had no part in that. Aubrey wanted them to wear their matching school shirts. Yes, only in Texas would a private school have camouflage T-shirts!)
I love that you can see the story without seeing their faces. Body language says a lot!
This next shot was one of my favorites. The contrast and composition are awesome, focus is good and the I couldn't have asked for better leading lines! The reflection is the added cherry on top!
This was a super fun assignment that provided a great challenge and new way to think about how and why I take photos. Try it sometime!
Or better yet, come to a class.