If you want to learn a few things about photography from one of the best in the business then throw away your camera’s handbook – it’s all about your attitude, not technical mumbo-jumbo, according to this straight shooter.
Sure respected Australian photographer and travel writer Ewen Bell uses a few technical know-hows to pull off his award winning shots, but his mantra is to follow three things: go slow, get close and look for light.
By slowing down he says it’s about finding an emotional connection with your subject, he often asks himself “what is it about this place or person that I like?”.
Forget your zoom, just throw the camera into Av (aperture priority) and get close. Much like a car he says it’s not about the buttons (portrait or close up) – they’re just there because we think we need them.
Forget the common rule of thumb to shoot away from light too, and shoot straight into it, or even better, shoot across it.
If you can get Ewen to talk technical you’ll get a few key things to consider – ISO (keep it low for bright light) shutter speed (F2 or as low as the camera will go for a great depth of field) and auto exposure lock – which is great in complex light situations.
Ewen’s points are just the kind of thing a keen, but very amateur, photographer like myself needs to hear, and it’s clearly working for him. He now has more than 10,000 images in the photographic libraries of travel organisations around the world
Still in the dark? You can always download Ewen’s ebook – http://photographyfortravellers.com/books.php and prepare to be in awe of what a humble photographer with a big dose of creativity can do.
Ewen Bell was speaking at a skills development workshop for IFWTWA members at the River’s Edge Events Centre in Melbourne, before flying off to Bhutan.