Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Blue in Focus

My photography class kicked off yesterday, and so far it's really interesting! I've already learned a lot about my camera -- how to control shutter speeds, F-stops and the ISO, for example. For years I've been shooting in automatic mode, relying on the camera to set all those factors for me. Usually it works really well. But there are times when I might want to take control, and now I'll know how.

I'm not totally green -- I know from working with film cameras what shutter speeds and F-stops are, for example -- but I didn't know which dials and buttons on my digital camera control and meter them.

The guy teaching the course is a photojournalist who worked for Agence France Presse, or AFP. He seems very knowledgeable and he's a good teacher. In between classroom lectures and demonstrations we are periodically sent out onto Oxford Street, the main shopping drag in the heart of West London, to practice our skills.

These photos are the result of a 10-minute assignment on focusing. We were supposed to choose a color -- in my case, blue. Then we shot photos experimenting with focus points, or those little squares that you see inside the viewfinder of your camera, incorporating items of our chosen color into each picture.

That's why part of these images is focused -- usually the blue object -- and part isn't.

Fascinating, I know.


  1. Fantastic shots. I love the bicycle.

    You surely didn't waste time signing up for a class. Damn you're good!


  2. I'm finally catching up on blog reading. I love pictures that have a bit of blur going on in them - they're more interesting that way - to me anyway. It's one of my favorite ways to take pictures of outdoor flowers.

  3. LOVE the bottle! And the ample buttocks. Classes are always stimulating- glad you are taking one and showing the results- I am inspired! Thank you!
    Wags to the pooches!

  4. OH DANG!!! Just catching up with you- read about the pooches and my heart sank through to the basement. So sorry, so sorry!!! So sad! And I realize that my 13 year old pooch may one day sooner than later be headed off to a final vet visit and my heart breaks and breaks some more!
    The pups are fine...we are not!

  5. After being a real purist about never using anything automatic on my camera or car, I fell out of it through the years. (San Francisco hills helped me to appreciate the benefits of automatic transmission.) Now I would like to go back to more manual approaches to photography.

  6. I belong to an "art club" group where we challenge each other over the hot summer months to a certain subject. We have painters and sculptors as well as photographers in the group. Each person takes turns throwing out a challenge such as "popcorn" and then we all go about the business of creating an art piece based on the subject. It has been so much fun. Your assignment to photograph blue sounds like something I would enjoy, especially in the case where you only have a certain amount of time to attack your subject. Enjoy the class.

  7. How perfect for you! Enjoy! Love the blue theme here.