Articles written by Mike Smith
Drone imagery has radically changed the way we photograph the Earth. It is now more common to see this vertical view, however the changed perspective is still new, still mesmerizing, and still has the ability to startle. See one website that gives you a daily fix of the world from above, a long way above!
The camera never lies — it doesn't, it can't, because it's an entirely quantitative device. It counts photons, collecting, recording the number that arrive at the sensor. And for the digital camera, this is an entirely electronic process that is digital end-to-end, producing a number as the final result. It's at that point that we convert it back to analogue (as brightness) for our eyes to interpret. The camera never lies.
I was cycling to catch my train a few weeks ago and after I had folded the bike and stowed it in the luggage area, was pondering the things in life I couldn't live without. It was much to my surprise that, considering this question, I actually decided it was my bike (Joey). I use it for commuting, for shopping, for leisure; it is with me most days of the week, and without it, the impact on my day-to-day life would be dramatic.
We had spent several hours hiking and arrived at the viewpoint. You know the score: unholster the camera and start shooting the bucket images. You've got to go through those inspiringly uninspiring captures to allow you to work the scene, gel with your mates, and see if some of the magic of the setting flows. I try to work towards something a little different; more dramatic, less dramatic, unveiling something new. We came back together as a group in order to compare how three very different photographers imagined the scene. Two of us were shooting Nikon, one Canon. And damn, those Canon images were just singing off the screen.
You've just arrived at a meeting with your prospective wedding clients. Examples of a canvas, acrylic, and aluminum are with you, but first up is a slideshow sequence you've authored as a video. You're there to impress and so whip out the pico projector and plug in the USB stick. This is going to be big — two meters big. You navigate to the video folder which has 30 or 40 files in it. And… they are only vaguely sorted by name. Where the heck is the file you are looking for?
Fstoppers reported on recently published research supposedly demonstrating the existence of selfitis or excessive selfie-taking. Researchers from Nottingham Trent University in the UK identified the symptoms of "selfitis" in over 600 university students in India. Given the catchy headline, does it all add up?
A tenth of a second is all it takes - yes, the blink is a marvel of human physiology that clears dust away from the eye and helps lubricate the eyeball. We have learned to cope with momentary blackout by suppressing those parts of the brain that monitor visual change, in a manner similar to the way we are able to ignore our blindspot caused by the optic nerve entering the eye. So why the hell do I often end up photographing people with their eyes closed?!
Interpreting a photo can be a difficult task. We capture a moment and those moments are not equifinal, that is they don't all lead to a known end. In fact, it's quite the opposite. The visual juxtaposition of people and objects have the potential to lead to multiple outcomes or multiverses. John Berger perceived this notion of equifinality as an inherent metric of photo quality in terms of how much of the moment a photo can inform us and what we can then say about its past and potential futures — its “quotation” as he called it.
The Victorians ushered in an era of dramatic change, principally in the application of science, but being able to do this (literally) on an industrial scale. The impact upon society was tumultuous - throw science, invention, industrial processes, and money into the mix and the way countries developed forever changed, forming the basis for the world we live in today.