Lyn Macdonald – approach to photography.

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Aileen our President gave a presentation on her view of photography and where her images come from.  It got Lyn thinking about her approach to photography and remembering an incident from last year.

3rd December 2014.

Aileen talking at the meeting last night about different ways that people approach photography and how they bring a part of themselves into each photo made me remember an incident last year that I still look back on with amazement.

I was taking photos at the biggest event in Buckie’s year, the BCKracker. In the paper it’s a big four-page spread and the object is to get as many and as varied a selection of photos as possible. It was just before the Santa parade was due to begin and the crowds had packed the pavements and were lined up all along the street. I stood ready with my camera, waiting for the pipe band to do its bit and lead Santa along towards us, and took the opportunity to grab some photos of the crowd while I was waiting. Some were big wide shots which showed the numbers, then I concentrated on getting a couple of tight, small groups of people looking happy and excited.

The parade began and reindeer, elves, floats, teletubbies. dancers, lifeboat men and people doing somersaults passed by. I took a huge selection, far more than would ever be needed, then the parade finished. A minute later my daughter, Kerri, and my grandson, Matthew, came rushing over.

“Hey! I didn’t know you were here!” I said.

Kerri looked puzzled. “Yes you did, we were waving at you and you took a photo of us!”

“Nah, wasn’t me”, I replied, but when she insisted, I checked back through the images and there they were, clear as day, smiling right at me. (See photo above).

Still to this day I can’t believe that I didn’t see them. I was so focused on seeing the “shape” and “feeling” of the photo that I’d totally missed that these were my people.

I’m sure there’s something very deep and meaningful in this but I’m not quite sure that I know what it is. It’s like going to a concert and trying so hard to get a good shot of the band that you come away and realise you forgot to hear the music. Or going out on a boat and trying so hard to get some great photos of dolphins that you don’t pay any attention to how they make you feel when they roll over and look up at you. Or maybe there’s just a bit of my brain that’s not connected up right!

The message I think I’m trying to put forward is never to deny the big picture when you’re busy trying to capture the little one (in your camera). Put your camera down for a minute every now and then and look around you.

But there again, maybe I’m wrong. If you’re going all out to take a winning shot, maybe it’s only the little picture that matters, and the more you can blot out the rest of the world as you take it – well, maybe that is what will make that winning picture for you.

I’ve actually got no idea. What do members think?

Image: K and M at Kracker by Lyn Macdonald

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