Lee Sacrey Photography – Lee's Chatter

Mainly Photography but a little of everything at times

Photographers are strange!!

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This is one of the photographs taken on my outing with Megan, September 8, 2009. I really like this photo it is one of my favorites. There was same inspiration for this one. I have a photograph from Darwin Wiggett called “Prairie Relics” which made me want to try this scene. Even though they are very different, in my mind there is a connection.

Photographers are strange!!

Well, how is that title? Just what you expected to see on a photography website. There is some truth to it, just not in the way you might think. Photographers come from all walks of life: teachers, accountants, house wives, I bet every profession, trade and career type has at least one person who is into photography. So why then am I saying they are strange? Well, it has nothing to do with their personality or what their make-up or background would be. It is more about the differences they see in everyday life and the things they find interesting and all of us who aspire to be photographers need to learn what it takes to be strange as well.

To explain what I mean, let me talk about my week. This week my second photography workshop took place and it was a great week to be me. The photographers who were speaking at the workshop arrived on Thursday afternoon. Dale picked them up at the airport and I met her at the house. One of them had never been to Yellowknife or the NWT before so a quick tour of our beautiful city was in order. Until late afternoon we drove around showing and viewing the sites, stopping at a few of the hot spots. After the tour we had a great dinner and then we sort of just hung out and crashed. Friday, I decided I would continue the tour only this time with cameras in hand and lots of stopping for photo ops. Here is where it gets strange. The previous day I had shown a few of the places I like to shoot and, as we stopped at the first, I expected to be there just for a few minutes. Wow, that was very wrong. We were there until lunch time! I watched in fascination as what I thought was an area with very little to shoot turned into a playground for these two photographers. I watched, shot some pictures and followed for an hour or so. I even had time to go through the photos on my camera and delete the bad ones (which took awhile, lol). What could they possibly shoot for that long in an area only about 100 metres square? An area with 10 or 15 old pieces of mining equipment – they looked into cracks and crevices, looked at rust spots, looked at the nuts and bolts and all kinds of things that I see there all the time. I didn’t get it.

Then there was lunch, then a 45 minute drive, another hour or two of shooting, drive back, have dinner and then to the Hey Rosetta concert. After all that I decided to go shoot northern lights for an hour and a half. Oh yeah and then process all those pictures and finally to bed at three a.m. I had to go to bed early as we had an eight-hour photo workshop the next day!

Well, now we arrive at Saturday. Up at 7 am, get ready, go to the workshop location and then set-up. At 8:35 the first attendee arrives and at 9 am we are under way. The workshop goes well. We discuss and learn about lighting (direct, diffused, front, back and side). It started out simple enough and then all of a sudden I realize that the light I think I know and understand, I don’t. I don’t pay enough attention to it. I get use to these areas and forget to look for the things that are there. Photographers are strange; they have learned to use some different part of their brain that allows them to see the familiar in new ways. It allows for the viewing of details we regularly miss. I need to find this part of my brain, if I have it. I need to be strange (I know what some of you are thinking and it is not funny).

If you see these strange photographer type creatures lurking around your area, find out what they are looking at and call me. I need to see it too and if you want to learn to be strange, which I think you should, contact Samantha Chrysanthou and/or Darwin Wiggett (there are links on this site) and organize the seminar “Practical Tips and Personal Expression in Nature Photography: A One Day Seminar”. It is worth it.

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Written by leesacrey

September 13, 2009 at 12:00 PM

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