Composition and Light
Unlike most bird photographers, I'm not really interested in capturing a "portrait" of a bird. I think that kind of photo is fine to perhaps illustrate a bird ID guide, but it falls way short of stretching the boundaries of fine art imaging. My goal has always been to capture images that look more like a painting than they do a simple bird photograph.
As I have mentioned so often in this blog, "Photography is about composition and light." Truly meaningful images need to demonstrate the use of both if they are to achieve any success in the field of art. Snapshots are just that.......quick snapped images with little thought or planning. Fine art photographs require thought and skill, and I think a special kind of eye. The artist eye is one that sees within a subject a sense of space and time. The artist looks at light and how it plays with the subject. He or she makes decisions based upon a visual composition, and how the light source reacts to that composition. The artist looks for lines and curves within the composition and how they add to or subtract from the impact of the image. The artist/photographer restrains from the "snap" of the shutter until the compositional elements resolve themselves in his or her eye. The magic moment comes only after all of the artistic details have been worked through in the viewfinder. At that single moment, an image is born........and with luck and skill........a work of art.