Photo of a woman walking in front of a bakery near Cuzco.

Frame and wait!

Sometimes, when we find a beautiful setting, we take our camera, compose the picture and eagerly shoot a photo. We then check the LCD’s preview and see that the photo looks fine but there is something important missing from the image. It could be a balancing feature or a pattern-breaking element. Many times what the photo needs is a human or dynamic connection and if we cannot find it we walk away with an incomplete image.

Photo of a man in front of a blue door in Cuzco.
The blue door in Cuzco seemed to glow in the twilight. I framed my photo and just had to wait for the man walking up the hill and carrying a canvas bag to get into my composition.

Other times we feel that the missing element might somehow materialize, maybe as a cloud slowly evolving, or a bird flying into the picture frame. These times we frame carefully perhaps using a tripod, we get the exposure right and wait like a fisherman, finger in camera until the moment comes.

Photo of two girls running in front of a Cross in Lambayeque, Peru.
The photo of the cross in Lambayeque would have been just fine by itself but I had already seen the girls running around…

If we can get the element that makes the composition work then we feel very rewarded. This is one kind of pictures I always remember, perhaps because they are more “made” than “found.” I feel that I contributed more to the image through my vision and patience than by my technique.

Photo of a woman walking in front of a bakery near Cuzco.
A basket hanging from a pole means “Bakery” in the villages near Cuzco, Perú. This would have been a very dull picture were it not for the woman who was really enjoying her walk.
Colorful wall in Lambayeque Peru.
There is no one in this very graphic setting in Lambayeque, Peru. The photo is fine, but if you check my post “Raw is not for fixing bad photos” you will see how two kids riding a bicycle make it more appealing.

Have you tried framing the photo first and then waiting for the magic too?

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18 thoughts on “Frame and wait!”

  1. Patience is it’s own reward. Most of the really good photographers will tell you that in the second or two after most people have taken a shot is where you will find the difference. A lot of people think I must have a screw loose because I do wait for the right image. What sometimes also happens is that I have the image with that special something and as I press the button, something else pops in to make it really special.

    Liked by 1 person

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