Easy on the Light
Confession time. I occasionally forget to adjust my shutter speed when I move from a bright environment to one with less light. As a result, I get some underexposed shots. The thing is, I sometimes get frames that I really like. When I Google deliberate underexposure, there’s very little that discusses the shutter speed tweaks that I use without any post processing work. So for all I know I’m using horrible technique! Let’s take a look at what I’ve done. It’s not a whole lot, and it’s spread out over four years/two cameras. My oblivious nature is the uniting thread in all these.
As you can see in this example from 2010, I accidentally use an ultrafast shutter speed when photographing a brightly colored object in the shade or other muted lighting. I usually do this when I’m constantly switching environments and am not paying attention to the lighting changes. When you think about it, we photographers spend a good amount of time switching environments even if we’re in the same locale. Light can change in the space of two minutes and/or two feet. I’ve worked to pay closer attention, so I generally don’t create these accidental but interesting looking shots all that much. When I got Rigoberto, however, I had a whole bunch of these moments. What was weird about that was I’d already had Rigoberto for a couple months and had done extended shoots before. We could probably write it off as me being a space cadet or being overwhelmed by the kids around. In all fairness, I was there around 2:30 or so on a Friday afternoon, so toddlers and any kids who could get out of school early were bound to be there. Maybe I should try for 10 AM on a Tuesday or something next time. We’ll see about that.
Okay, that last one wasn’t a good example, but I felt like including it since it had a related effect. In any case, I might try deliberately underexposing shots and see what happens. I’ll just need to make sure I can find enough brightly colored objects, and I’ll try to photograph things besides flowers. I have so many flower photographs it’s not even funny.