Helpful Posts: 0
27th October 2011, 03:02 PM
The Allure Can Be Distracting
1 of my foibles is being so enchanted with the instant allure of a scene that "discriminating" composition seems to evaporate; to surmount this i force myself to incrementally observe a scene from several angular aspects while looking thru the camera's viewfinder; since i first visualize many scenes "in my minds eye" i often don't "see" distracting elements that seem to "suddenly materialize" after the images are downloaded into my pc; another very real "parallax" phenomena rears its tentacles especially with telephoto lens over 80mm, i.e. what i see when peering at a scene over my camera/lens longitudinal axis differs from the actual viewfinder image.
27th October 2011, 04:56 PM
Re: The Allure Can Be Distracting
IMO, mentally converting the 3D image seen in the viewfinder to the 2D image with which you will end up is a learned skill. It is easier for some photographers to achieve this skill than for others which is why I think that some photographers seem to favor live view (which converts the 3-D image to 2-D on the LCD)...
Many new (and quite a few more experienced) photographers pay so much attention to the specific subject in the image that they don't pay attention to details like background and various foreground distractions. We have selective vision in which we can effectively eliminate extraneous details in our mind. The camera doesn't have this selective vision and shows up every portion of the image with equal importance. This is when using selective focus can come into play by blurring the background and centering attention on the desired subject.
How many mothers looking at their cute little child in the viewfinder, will pay attention to things like trees that seem to grow out of the child's head? Most are too involved admiring the toddler, whom they love more than anything in the world, to worry about what is involved with achieving a good image. BUT... they NEED to worry about those details in order to achieve a good image.
HOWEVER, most moms don't really give a hoot about the quality of the image of their children, as long as baby can be recognized and had a cute grin...
If extraneous details cause problems in your imagery, I would recommend making a visual survey of the edges of your frame in the viewfinder. Then I would make sure to survey the background. This seems like a lengthy process but is actually quite quickly done by an experienced photographer.
IMO, this is easier done when using an eye level finder rather than viewing the scene using the rather small LCD live view. I cannot understand how a person using live view at arms length away from his or her eye can detect a tree branch intruding into an image or a pole growing out of the subjects head or some equally offensive intrusion into the frame that is shown on the tiny LCD.
NOTE: When I say "tiny" I am referring to the difference in comparative sizes between an image shown on the LCD and the very close to 100% size image diaplayed through an eye-level viewfinder. Additionally, when viewing with my eye up against the camera, I have virtually no distracting elements surrounding the image portrayed by that viewfinder. Shooting with live, the entire world: my hand, the camera, and everything around it is a distraction. When I shot with 4x5" and 8x10" viewfinder cameras, I used a dark cloth to both protect the image on the ground glass from flare due to reflection and to isolate the scene from the world around me.
With either an eye-level viwwfinder or using a dark cloth with a viewfinder; I can "step into the scene"!
Last edited by rpcrowe; 27th October 2011 at 05:13 PM.
28th October 2011, 07:36 AM
Re: The Allure Can Be Distracting
This is something we have all done, ElfB (and I still do now and again, if I'm honest).
After I have looked through the viewfinder at what I'm taking, I try to remember to look at what I am not taking.