Yesterday I decided I had to go hiking after a fairly intensive working week. Of course for a photographer hiking means “shooting outdoors with half a mile walk between shots” so I just took along my camera with a normal zoom lens and went to the nearby mountains.
I did some forest photos which are nice and then came upon a small creek. I tried doing a photo of the water and the surrounding trees but the harsh sunlight just didn’t make the picture work. Then, as I was preparing to go on I noticed that the hard light produced nice reflections on the water. I zoomed in as far as I could with my zoom lens and took a picture isolating the reflections. I finished my hike and returned home.
Today, I paid more notice to my water photo and noticed how the image on the computer screen had a strong texture that reminded me of textured metal as in a sculpture shining in the sun. There was very little color so I decided it would look good as a black and white image.
As I zoomed into the image the patterns and textures became even stronger and I learned my first lesson: size matters! The beautiful undulations of the water made visible by the reflections of the surroundings became stronger graphic elements when seen up close. If I print this photo I will surely make it really big so people can dive into the texture, or crop it even more (good thing we have so many megapixels these days).
What then is my second lesson? Always throw in a longer zoom lens if there is space in my camera bag!