Monday, October 27, 2008

Instructor's Tip: Use Contrast For Impact

By Russ Burden

REMINDER - No Photo Tip Of The Week next Monday as I'll be in Bryce and Zion doing my tour

Use Contrast For Impact
The word contrast refers to the extremes in the range of tones from the brightest highlight to the darkest shadow. With B&W, it relates to the range of gray shades from pure white to rich black. In either case, the more extreme the range, the higher the contrast. Conversely, if all the tones are close, the contrast is low.

NATURAL CONTRAST: Living in Colorado, I experience weather extremes. One year the weather was beautiful but an early May snowstorm blanketed my town in white. Being one who never turns down a photographic opportunity, I grabbed my camera and walked around the neighborhood. I turned to my left as I heard a clump of tulips call my name. Being careful to not disturb their snow hats, I captured the concept of contrast that occurs in nature.

RELATIONSHIPS: When I think of the word contrast, I associate it with the word “opposites.” Divergent subjects make great photographic subjects. I was photographing a hot air balloon ascension in Snowmass, CO. Having a number of traditional hot air balloon photos, I wanted to capture something with a different twist. Seeing the already launched balloons become smaller as they rose, I decided to juxtapose a just launched one against the smaller one to create big to little contrast.


Enjoy this week's "Instructor's Tip" by award winning nature photographer Russ Burden. The photo(s) in this post were taken by Russ Burden. To learn more about how Russ captured this image, join him on one of his photo tours. Visit Russ Burden Photography to get more information.

To take a class with Russ or a fellow Digital Photo Academy instructor in your area, check out the Digital Photo Academy. I took Russ' intermediate and advanced courses last year, and he continues to be a strong source of knowledge and encouragement as I progress in my photography.

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.

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