“By understanding and practicing the principles of visual design, including light, form, shape, line, texture and perspective, and by having an open mind to explore new frontiers, we can greatly enhance our pleasure of discovering the world around us, and perhaps – discover ourselves” – William P. McElligot
“The camera is an instrument that teaches people how to see without a camera” Dorothea Lange
© Klaus Rossler copyright 2011
Imagine walking on an abstract painting, living on a painter’s palette. Hanging out on rock shelves the size of football fields with ever-changing features, painted with huge and tiny brushes, so clean and smooth, you can eat from it. Besides innumerable lakes and rivers, this is another reward for living on the Precambrian Shield. It’s hard to stop shooting and only the fear of running out of memory or batteries is a reminder. You want an overcast day and lenses from wide-angle to macro – any size of subject matter is possible, from rock walls the size of houses to a square cm. Use of a tripod is crucial, even though there is enough light for handheld shutter speeds. But in close-up photography a level focal plane and steady camera distance are extremely important. Moving only a couple of millimeters between composing and pressing the shutter can bring the image out of focus. Working with textures and patterns, often without a main point of interest, is also a good exercise for composing – what to exclude or include in the frame, how close or far to be. Especially those extreme close-ups open up worlds invisible to the naked eye and only a few cm further there is another, interesting image. But larger size areas are equally rewarding and it’s hard to tell later if the shot was taken from a few inches, feet or meters. Never ending variations of colours, textures, patterns – natural and real – yet when framed and taken out of context, become abstract and non-representational. The expressive quality of a photograph depends on the ability to abstract, meaning, to separate the parts from the whole. Abstracting is recognizing both, the basic form of something and the elements that make up that form.
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