At its essence, a photograph can be understood as a story told with light and time—a non-verbal form of storytelling. When we ‘snap’ a photo, we are making a visual record of a scene (light) at a specific moment in time, most often a mere fraction of a second. Whatever our reason is for taking the photo, well, that is the story.
A photo can serve as a record of a scene or event, a memory. It can also be an expression of something the photographer wishes to convey, an idea or a feeling. However simple or complex our ambition, when we raise that viewfinder to our eye, the resulting image is a combination of the intuitive and the intentional.
I like to think of it this way: the things that draw us to a subject have engaged the intuitive part of our brain. It could be the color of the light, a humorous juxtaposition, a striking face, an activity, a dramatic moment. Once our intuitive mind has drawn us to a particular subject, we then engage the intentional part of our brain, using the tools of photography to follow through and tell the story. (more…)