I have been looking over the goals I had set back in January (more on those at the end of the month) and I have been thinking of what goals I should set for next year.  With that thought fresh in my mind, I came across this photo I took a couple of weeks ago while shopping in the village of Skaneateles, New York of a colorful display of blown glass suncatchers at the back of one of the shops.

Glass Sun catchers at the back of a shop in Skaneateles, New York.

Glass Sun catchers at the back of a shop in Skaneateles, New York. Nikon D700, 28-300VR, 1/160s, f/16, ISO 200, EV 0, 72mm focal length.

As I processed it I began to see other compositions within the photo.  Rainbow swirls, green alien landscapes, autumn colors and purple fantasy.  I tried them all but most were a bit too blurry for me except this one.

An abstract piece I found in the suncatcher photo above.

An abstract piece I found in the suncatcher photo above.

It is not of much use after cropping so much.  If I had seen it at the time, I could have backed up some and used the Nikon 28-300VR lens to zoom in for a faux macro photo and make it a much better image for me to use.

This lead me to one of the goals I will be setting for 2011.  That is to practice seeing more photographic opportunities.  I have not decided how I will go about it.  Reading books, taking an online class or simply being more aware.  Any suggestions or tips?  Leave me a comment below.  Thanks!

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16 Responses to Abstraction

  1. burstmode says:

    Finding those other worlds is what interests me most. Very nice.


  2. The first one is beautiful, I prefer it to the close-up.
    Yes, be more aware and really look at your subject (works best through the lens) and try different angles as well.
    Bryan Peterson’s book “Learning to see creatively” is great, too, if you haven’t read it yet.


  3. Carsten says:

    They are both beautiful Scott.
    What you describes happens to us all the time. To me, at least. When I come home with the camera full of images the result can be a little dissapointing. But among all the planned shots are often a few ‘outliers’. And between them a little pearl is hidden.
    When I find one of them I always think: Why didn’t I shoot more of this motive?


  4. Gerry says:

    Happens in writing all the time. I get back from an interview and assemble all the notes . . . and only then realize where the real story is. (Over in MacArthur Park melting in the rain most likely.) We see what we’re predisposed to see–and we’re real stubborn about not seeing what we don’t believe in! Along with all the careful planning–and that certainly has its own rewards–I think there has to be room for improvisation.


  5. Nye says:

    Beautiful shot Scott, I like the colors combination of the first image. Sometimes I discover that looking through the lens gives me a better composition that I couldn’t see standing there especially if it’s small details.


  6. Hi Scott. I like both glass images. In part because the glass is lovely all by itself. The second photo is more intriguing to me because it captures some of the ‘motion’ of the interior of the glass itself–a closeup of its essence. Lovely.


  7. Karma says:

    That “Picture Fall” class I took, although slightly frustrating at times, definitely gave me some ideas about different ways to look through the lens. It was fun getting a prompt in the email each morning as well. “Picture Winter” begins on January 1st if you are interested!


  8. Cool shots Scott, I like both photos 🙂


  9. Truels says:

    They are very beautiful these blown glass suncatchers.
    After I got started with “new life” in photography this year ( in January it is a year since I made my blog :-)) I think, that what I need is to follow new roads, and for my part new roads could be: To seek out new motifs in new places. To see images from new angles – turn me around – or go close. And get a better camera…. And I have recently started reading new photo blogs – and a really good place is here: http://www.aminus3.com/
    This year one thing has often surprised me, (as Carsten also talks about): That when I get home and get a closer look at my captures, there is often a good photo hidden among all the material, I am not really expecting something of!


  10. Anna says:

    I like both; yet I especially like the crop. Goals? Well, may I be abstract? 🙂 I’ve given some thought to ‘goals’ as to my photography, all that I’ve learned with my camera and photography. For me, I am a wide angle type of photographer… whether a short lens or zoom lens… still wide. I’m thinking of moving more in to… closer, and the abstract part, not just the type of photography shots, let more flow with the Spirit when photographing. That Creative Spirit that will suddenly hit you when your lost within photographing a subject that carries you away. Kind of woo-woo, but hey… I’ve felt it and been ‘within’ it while photographing, and this is what I desire to do so more of. Also, I would not only like to move in closer but get more into simplicity, photographically speaking.

    Have you read “Landscape Beyond-A Journey into Photography” by David Ward? I’m reading it now. Here is what is stated on the back cover:

    “Photography, for me, is a voyage of exploration. When I set out to make images I do so purely in a spirit of enquiry. …”


  11. Giiid says:

    I like the way you have cropped the photo, making it into abstract art. To me, this is the fun part, the cropping, that is when the photo is taken and perfect of course.
    My advice will be:
    Look at the motive, and start investigating to find out what it is. Don´t think that you already know, because what you are looking for is hidden and has perhaps no name. After some studying, you will see shapes, light and shadows that you didn´t see from the beginning. It´s a kind of mental relaxing.


  12. chloe says:

    i’ve used my 28-300 as a macro on a couple of occasions
    i like all of your photos, but the 1st is my favourite
    there’s so much mystery and excitment in each item


  13. I love glass pictures, so many surprises and hidden treasures once you look at them closely or cropped them. Yours are beautiful, Scott. Next year I will try to chose other angles for my pictures, more B&W, some portraits too ;), street shots… all new and different for me.


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