Another Look, an image with you. This is a really exciting time to be a photographer. This image, which I made just last year in the deserts of Botswana, I could not have made even 10 years ago. The cameras are so much better, the lenses are better, and the software is really remarkable. What has not changed in the last 10 years or even in the last 50 years, is the criteria by which I judge images. Let me give you a quick recap. I talked with you about this in more detail in a previous course, The Art Of Seeing, but in my opinion, of course everything is subjective in photography, what do you need to make an image compelling? Well you have to have a real subject, no matter whether it is a big subject like an elephant, or a small subject like a butterfly, and this seems really simple, but too many photographers make the mistake of trying to combine things that are really better treated separately. So, think of one subject, and then take a step beyond your subject and try to establish a ...
perspective or, as I call it, try to come up with a point of view, and that's especially important if you're dealing with subjects that have been photographed many times before. Zebras, wonderful animals, but this looks like many other images that you've seen of zebras before, so I try to get beyond the obvious. (audience laughs) This is a rear-end view of zebras and I see your reactions, it elicits a response and that is what I'm aiming for. An image can be compelling if you add a really interesting composition to it, and in The Art Of Seeing I go into more detail about that, you know there's different principles of composition. This is a really simple one, repeating patterns, fish eggs in a laboratory. This is a bit more complicated, a subject as a point in the landscape and then a counterpoint of all the lines converging on the subject. Of course, light is a fundamental quality that can enhance an image, and here are two examples, two unusual examples. The reflected light that shines back from an evening sky and then bathes the whole Pacific Ocean in this ethereal glow. And here, another dramatic example of spot light coming down into a slot canyon in Arizona. When it comes to wildlife photography, or portrait photography if you're trying to focus on people, it often is about the moment. You know, the gesture that is revealed by somebody's facial expression, or the body position, and that is what I try to capture here in this scene where an emperor penguin, looking at a crush of tiny little chicks to try and find her particular chick. And that same kind of moment is expressed here in a herd of impalas that are subtly looking up because they perceive some danger in the tall grass in the savannas of East Africa. Ultimately, the hardest thing to capture in an image is meaning. All these previous aspects are good and we're going to see quite a few interesting examples of that, but meaning is what enables you to transcend the specifics of a situation and to start communicating with your photography to create a bridge to other people. Let me explain to you what I mean by that. We're in the midst of a social media campaign about bonobos, you know they're relatives of chimps, but they're quite different inside and on the outside. This is an image I made of a bonobo, a female, who is playing with an infant, making it twirl around on her legs, and of course any human parent will recognize this, you know, we do this at home. So, when we post these images it has an enormous response from people all over the world, I create a connection between the bonobos and us. Here's a detail of the female who you saw in the previous image, you know she's a lost a lot of her hair and that makes her even more human-like, so both of these images are meant to create connections, to use photography as a way to communicate, not just to create beauty within the frame, but to use images as words that you can pull together as sentences to say something to other people. So, from the sublime to the profane, this is how we're gonna be looking at images today. My mission today is to enhance your vision. You know, as Chris mentioned, we've seen a lot of amazing submissions, we've had to make a painful call, right Chris, otherwise we'd be here for another 24 hours, right? So we've made a selection to show you a variety of landscape images, macro images and wildlife images, and I'm gonna be working together with Ross. Ross works with us in our studio, he makes my images look a lot better than the way they come back from the field, so we're gonna be using Adobe Lightroom to analyze the images and to make them look better. Before we do that, here's a couple of the main tools that we use in Lightroom, how many of you here in the studio are using Lightroom yourselves? Everybody does, it's become the universal tool that photographers around the world use for that purpose. In that previous portrait of Lana, the bonobo, we made some adjustments, and here are the adjustments that Ross and I apply very commonly. We reduce the highlights, kind of which avoids the overblown parts of an image, we pull out the shadow details, we improve the whites and that creates a better tonality, and then we pull down into the blacks as well, and that creates crisper whites and darker blacks, you can also mask the noise that sometimes is apparent in the darker areas of your image. Here's how it starts. The sliders are in a neutral position, and here are a couple of the other tools we're gonna be using, we're gonna be cropping images, we're not gonna be worried too much today about spot removal, that gets tedious, we're not gonna deal with the red-eye reduction because we're not looking at images made of people using direct, head-on flash. This grad filter we're gonna be using a lot, and then there's the brush which enables us to make selective adjustments in just portions of the images.