There it is, the end of this semester. In the following days, my half year long journey in photography will end. The daily lesson not only taught me how to take a good picture, but helped me really getting settled in my new school and home. Being only something I heard of briefly and kinda was doing always, I didn’t imagine photography being that exciting, fascinating and capturing.
I started off the semester as a stranger. It is one of the hardest challenges to come into a different environment with different people and culture. By that I didn’t necessarily mean my new home, but also the photography class. My first shots I took for this class were simple and lacked artisticness. In my first major assignment, the Alphabet, I didn’t have a lot to say and the shots only showed the element I wanted to show. Soon after, my focus shifted away from just capturing an object to actually displaying an idea and a story. I learned a lot about compositional techniques and other tricks and created for almost all of them a collection of shots. The first one to come along was “Simplifying”, teaching me to simplify the background and leave space for the main object to attract the viewers attention even more. Therefore I captured an everyday situation and just changed the angle to get stuff out of the way. From this rather easy improvement I moved to even more specific adjustments I could make to clarify the message of a picture and make it interesting. I moved on to implementing leading lines and framing to my pictures, I specifically started to fill the frame of the picture as a whole, I started getting better at Photoshop allowing me to modify my pictures and improve them even more. With my actual photography skills improving, it was time to get the camera itself to the next level, too. I started dealing with an actual camera, instead of my phone and learned to adjust it according to the setting. After years of taking pictures with a phone, it was quite a little challenge, to adjust to my new way of taking pictures. Looking back I would even say, it was one of the biggest challenges in the whole semester. Even though, with my two latest articles being about Aperture and how it’s changing the depth of field and Shutterspeed, I just touched the surface of a big camera setting universe, I’m satisfied with my progress so far. I start to understand the details and hidden tricks about the secret of taking good pictures. With this attitude I went into my last shooting. My final shot shows Jonas from Germany looking into the sunset at Belle Island, Detroit. Jonas is metaphorically seeing the sun of my first semester setting as it is about to end. Further the bridge connecting the US and Canada, I wanted to display the connection of two different countries with their cultures. Jonas ist standing right in between.
Since the semester being almost over now, I’m either sad that it’s over, but also thankful for the things I experienced and learned. I learned to appreciate the greatness of a good picture and what it can do. I believe, that photography by time will just evolve into an even stronger tool to express a thought and wake interest in people that look at a picture.