So your out and about walking the mountains and hills then suddenly this great view appears before you. Could be light that illuminates the vista in a way that is ethereal or just a great view. Your first reaction is generally to stop and admire but then you fiddle in the bag to bring out the camera or if its already to hand, you decide to photograph what you see.
How do you do go about capturing it in the best way you can? What is 'the best' way?
I hear this time and again and I always reply in the same way.
What you see is yours. Ok I don't actually mean you own the landscape but the shot? Its yours.
The view that you are witnessing is only seen from your perspective. Thats when 'we' as photographers decide to acquire it and put before others in the way that we saw it at that moment.
What a fantastic thing to be able to do. Deliver the feast that was before your eyes to others. If they like it then great. If not, well you did it for you and how you choose to do that is yours.
The technicalities of the way you photograph it are not irrelevant but what you see and how you portray it is yours and yours alone. Of course there are a myriad of techniques out there to get to grips with but the composition and how you portray the final image is yours.
There is no right and wrong. It is what works for you.
You own it.
You can line people up, who are looking at exactly the same view, let them take their photo and then look at their results. Never two the same.
In my earlier days when I had hair, I was lucky enough to be packed off to The BBC at Elstree to undertake my Producers and Directors course. The lectures and practicals were fantastic but I remember one teacher in particular who said to us, "there are six of you here. If I send you all off to Waitrose (he was posh), to buy the ingredients for each of you make a fruit cake, then asked you to bake it, what would we end up with?"
The answer is six different fruit cakes.
Doesn't mean they wouldn't be good. Just different. We all had the same to play with but will always blend the ingredients differently. How you put it together is appealing to some but never all.
Photography is exactly the same.
I have no issue if a photograph is taken in an abstract way, traditional or in minute detail. What you see is yours and as long as you enjoy what you do and how you do then how great is that. What a wonderful way to see the world.
Last weekend my wife and I went over to Southport. If you have never been there, it was the butt of music hall comedians who would tell you, "as kids our parents would take us there to look for the sea". It always seems to be miles away. No matter how far you walk.
I look back on visits there with fond memories. We took our kids there when they were young. Yes, we tried to find the sea but enjoyed many hours playing our own 'test matches' with a ball that defied logic, leaping off huge dunes near Birkdale and watching the plane that used to undertake joy rides for daytrippers. It would thunder along the sand then lift off the beach, circling the coast and returning for the next batch to enjoy. Oh yes and not forgetting munching on candy floss as we visited the fair.
So as the weekend weather was good, Irene we took off for the coast and naturally my X Pro 2 camera came too. When I know I am travelling light I just take the one lens and I love the XF 16-55 f2.8 as it seems to cover most aspects for me..
I took several pictures in very different styles. They are personal to me but if you like them thats a bonus. I liked what I saw before me and so clicked when I thought it was right.
I love it.
Go out and see what you can serve up.