How do you learn to see?

Discussion in 'Photographic Discussions' started by amolitor, Jul 10, 2012.

  1. LizardKing

    LizardKing No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Study and practice, pretty much as anything else. I can recommend these 2 books I've read on the subject:

    Amazon.com: The Photographer's Eye: Composition and Design for Better Digital Photos (9780240809342): Michael Freeman: Books
    Amazon.com: Learning to See Creatively: Design, Color & Composition in Photography (Updated Edition) (9780817441814): Bryan Peterson: Books

    Basically, even though you don't always have your camera with you, you'll always carry your eyes... So, you can pay attention to how light and colors behave around you under different conditions and moments of the day. Try also to find other basic elements of design such as lines, repetitions, shapes, form, textures, etc etc... They're everywhere and you just need to take the time to SEE them.


     
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  2. PapaMatt

    PapaMatt TPF Noob!

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    Well, my 2 cents in the pot! What our eyes may see and what the camera may see is somewhat different . Try to see what the lens will see. Just practice and practice some more, in the end we all will see it in our own way. Just let it speak to the heart and soul, and most of us have that> :)
     
  3. pgriz

    pgriz Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    The main problem with "seeing" is that my mind immediately busily tries to categorize, pidgeon-hole, and label everything that the eyes see. It's hard to discern the subject with all those bits of classification obscuring its shape, and even being. So for me, seeing happens when my mind (well, the busy classifier part) goes to sleep, and I can see the contours past the surface skin, and get a sense of the hidden. I have not yet internalized photography well enough to allow the same seeing mind then capture the image with the camera. To operate the camera, the busy-body mind awakes, and poooff, goes the insight I was slowly reaching.
     
  4. KmH

    KmH In memoriam Supporting Member

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    Very few people have an inate ability to see things that would make great photographs.

    It is a skill that can be learned, like jowensphoto said, by studying visual image composition, the elements of design, and by understanding photographic lighting.

    Composition and lighting are the 2 most important elements of a good photograph.
     
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  5. Solarflare

    Solarflare No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I've been told that photography is, among other things, the ability to learn to see like a camera.

    Cameras operate much differently because they see "things as they are". While our brain has a lot of preprocessing before we actually "see".

    For example, if we are indoors and there is only artificial light, our eyes will already compensate for the fact that an item standing 1 meter from the artificial light source will get 4 times as much light as an item 2 meter from the light source. A camera cant compensate for that.

    Though digital photography might lead in the end for this to change. Many of the preprocessing done by the human eye and the brain could be done by computers, thus leading cameras to take pictures that are closer to our own visual experience of the scene in question.
     
  6. JoshuaSimPhotography

    JoshuaSimPhotography No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Everyone sees the world differently, there isn't a strict code on how to see. Photography is sharing your view. So there is no wrong or right in art. And also remember to act like a camera lens, what you may see may not turn out like you thought in a camera...
    There are guides and rules in photography, but you don't haw to follow them
     
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  7. Fred Berg

    Fred Berg Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Parallel to seeing like a photographer is thinking like one. If the camera you are using is doing this for you, then you will continue to be blind to your own potential.

    Digital Stunts Looking and Reasoning.
     
  8. Compaq

    Compaq Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Seeing isn't hard, and anyone can do it. That's my view point. Anyone can do anything (unless there are concrete physical limitations).

    I've read a little about drawing (because I'd like to become better). One must simply learn to not pay attention to how the logical part of one's brain interpret the things we see. Instead of looking at simply a tree, and concluding "that's a tree, now I must draw it", one must rather focus on what our artistic part of the brain says. Highlights, shadows, where the light source is, lines, definition, depth, perspective. Our logic simply waves all that away, it's irrelevant to our perception of the fact that this is a "tree". The same would apply to photography, would it not? Stop looking at things as they are, but rather look at what makes up what they are.

    And anyone can do that.
     

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