Monday, April 14, 2008

Instructor's Tip: Decisive Moment

Enjoy this week's Photo Tip by instructor Russ Burden. To take a class with Russ or a fellow Digital Photo Academy instructor in your area, check out the Digital Photo Academy. I took an intermediate and advanced course with Russ and he has continued to be a strong source of encouragement and education as I have progressed in my photography.

Decisive Moment
Any time there’s action, motion, or people and animals are your
subjects, the moment at which the image is made is crucial. There
will always be that split second in time that the movement or
expression is at its optimum point. Learning how to anticipate and
capture that instant takes practice, knowledge of your subject, and

Many photographers have staked their claim in being able to capture
the decisive moment. Casual viewers of these types of images can
often be heard saying how lucky the photographer was to press the
shutter just when the action reached its peak. But what they don’t
understand is that certain photographers are consistently “lucky” and
are able to reproduce this luck over and over again. Obviously,
there’s a skill involved.

Some of the ingredients that go into the knowing when to press the
shutter are becoming thoroughly familiar with your subject to be able
to anticipate its movement, being patient and waiting for that once
in a lifetime look or expression, and being persistent by working and
reworking the same subject to get that one special image.


Don't forget to check Take Great Pictures for Russ' most recent tips. On the home page, click on the "Photo Tips And Techniques" button in the left hand column. Additionally, check out his "Digital Tip of the Month" found by clicking on the Digital Photography button.

To learn more about how Russ took the following photos in this post, join him on one of his photo tours. Visit Russ Burden Photography to get more information.

1 comment:

Dave Scott said...


Thanks to both you and Russ for this post.

The comment about knowing your subject is so true. Check out My High School Sports Site to see what can be done in single shot mode when you wait on, at time that perfect moment.

Thanks again!

-- Dave

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