Friday, June 12, 2015

Still Life In a Different Setting

by Deanna

Most of us at one time or another are absolutely just stuck on ideas or thoughts to post about.  Terri created quite a conversation about whether to use Instagram for just smart phone images or is it OK to use your big girl camera in her latest post.  And Dotti also generated quite the discussion on her last two posts about vision and still life photos.  I am one of the many that joined the Be Still 52 class, but failed right off the block.  Although I admire and sometimes swoon over the many beautiful "still-life" images that are posted on blogs and Instagram, I guess I am just too lazy and I don't have the space to set-up a nice well-lit studio.  If I do a "still-life" it is with minimal props such as this....

(prop - box purchased at Hobby Lobby)

I tend to lean towards nature, flowers, animals, birds etc and they become still-lifes only in a different setting.  No props other than the leaves on the flowers, a fence, a bird-bath, a bird-feeder, the natural surroundings.  I usually only have to step out my door to be inspired by the beauty of nature. And no lengthy set-up. 

Flowers are a weakness...




  
And ofcourse there are the berries....oh how I love those berries!


And then birds....

Bird House (prop?)

Robin bathing in a rose petaled bird birth...props added by the rose bushes above

Female and Male House Finches (bird-feeder prop)
If you are lucky to have these around you are blessed with not only their beauty but their melodious tweets. 

 Canada Geese Goslings (water prop)

And then an animal.  His mission was really trying to figure out a path to the bird feeder without success. 

(fence post prop)

Bottom line is this, draw your inspiration, your "style" from whatever makes your heart happy. I guess I am reiterating what Dotti has written, but I don't think we say it enough.  It's your style. Getting inspiration from others is great, we need that to challenge and inspire us however and whatever artfull way we shoot. Whether it be a beautifully styled image or an image that has it's own style, it's yours. Your style may change over the years, or even during a period in your life.  There may be a time when you are saddened by an event or perhaps in a state of joy. Both of these life periods can have a profound effect on your "eye".  There is no right or wrong,  We are always developing, always learning.  And PS I ordered the book Dotti recommended, The Visual Toolbox by David Duchemin.  Like I said, always learning. 

10 comments:

Sandra said...

Such beautiful images of flowers and berries and birds! We all have a certain style, to be sure and this changes over time as we all move forward!

Dotti said...

Preach it, Sister! Oh, I do hope this is sinking in for all of us. It's so easy to try to imitate somebody else's gorgeous photography but it won't work if it's not what our hearts and eyes see. You've been thinking what I've been thinking: flowers gardens, birds -- that's still life. It's simple still life, or nature's still life. And it all has its place in today's big wide world of photography. That's what makes it so much fun! Now, I'm going back to take another look at your wonderful still life photography.

Jeanne said...

i love your gosling photo and how it is processed. Your still lifes are right up my alley Deanna and never really see any better than yours... Natural is perfect and that peony is to dye for. My favorite flower

Sarah Huizenga said...

I read a great post today from the girls at Viewfinders - either you are a picture "taker" or a picture "maker". You can be both but one will definitely be dominant. I am a picture "taker". I think you are too Deanne :)

Liz said...

A gorgeous series of images Deanna!

terriporter said...

Deanna, your images never cease to challenge and inspire me. And I completely agree, we need to shoot what we love. I'm with you that nature's still lifes are the best, at least for me. As Sarah mentioned, there's a difference between taking and making a photograph. I prefer to capture what I see in nature, not what I have put together. All this discussion has brought home to a lot of us that we are not alone in this feeling. As always, your photos are perfectly gorgeous!

Susan said...

Very well spoken, Deanna! To me "still life" is anything that will "be still" long enough for me to capture the image lol! I love the natural effect as well as the props that many can make look like something out of a magazine! Its great that everyone has their own style of photography and I love nothing more than seeing everyones gorgeous photos! Thanks for sharing your thoughts and gorgeous photos...my fave is the first with the pink flower against the turquoise blue box!

Lisa Comperry said...

Lol, when I put a small bird feeder up in my backyard, a squirrel suddenly made an appearance....No birds, just the squirrel..It was funny to watch this cute squirrel attempt to make his way to the feeder....Needless to say he or she had to give up without success...

oliviafulmerphotography said...

I'm in Kim's Be Still 52 class (her second go-round) as well, and I can tell you that I am failing as well. I think I have the same reasons: no real space to set up a well-lit studio. I have trouble with the styling. However, put me in the yard surrounded by many things natural, and I do some up with images. I suppose I am a "taker" rather than a "maker" of images. And the images here are beautiful.

Peggy said...

What great advice. So often I see those soft still life photos and the effort that some photographers put into them. I, like you, don't have a studio or great window and Lots of props. I'm still basically point and shoot on auto mode.

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