Yesterday, we came across a very valuable LinkedIn course for photographers, by Ben Long, called ‘Advanced photography: Flash’. For all those interested, we strongly recommend it: it’s made up of short, practical and very accessible videos.
One of those is: ‘2 approaches to conceiving lighting’. In this clip, Ben Long explains that he believes there are 2 ways in which photographers approach lighting and its design in a scene.
The first method consists of having a clear, determined vision of what you’d like to create, and plan as much as you can: what type of light you'll be using, its role, how it will come out of its source, how will it fall off/bounce off surrounding surfaces… basically, the ‘planning-it-all ahead’ type of thing.
The second one is pretty much the opposite. You don’t need a clear vision. You just get on with it. You take a light source, a subject, and move your light and camera around to see what you can get on the spot.
We found this dual approach concept interesting and ‘funny’ in some way because it really struck home. At RAW Photography, there's Callum, and Roxane (oh, and our assistant Rabbit De Niro but we never really figured out what his approach is).
And despite sharing the same passion for photography and having a photo business together, each of us belongs to the opposite school of thought.
It might come from her background as a conference interpreter, but Roxane is a 'preparedness freak'. She plans everything ahead with military precision. It may not seem like it, but even before typing this blog post, she devised it, drew it, sketched it, mind-mapped it, you name it.
Callum, on the contrary, doesn’t bother with the preparations. He just does it (nb: this post is not sponsored by Nike). He gets on with it. He relies on his quick wits to assess a situation in the moment and think on his feet. Sadly, Roxane’s pea head does not allow her to do that.
Now, whether you’re a fellow photographer, interpreter, actor, or anyone else, what kind of approach do you go for?
Do you usually plan your dinners for the week and make a list before heading to Tesco? Or do you simply grab a trolley, run down the aisle, and decide what you’d like to munch on there and then? Do you have a travel list and pack your suitcase a week before going on holiday (and reopen it thousands of times to get something out because you need it) oooor, do you simply grab a bag on the day, throw a few pairs of shorts in there, a hat, sunglasses – sunscreen! You’ll need it - and you’re good to go? As you can probably tell, we did not have England as a destination in mind when we typed that last sentence.
We’re burning to know! What kind of person are you?