A Shot With A View

Honestly speaking I didn’t think this through. I should have contacted Michael Busselle, author of “100 Ways To Take Better Photographs” and discussed a royalty pay out to yours truly, considering I’ve technically been plugging his book and will be plugging his book throughout my photographic adventure. Dollar aside, I love the book’s straightforward, anti-pseudo-intellectual approach of potent bullet pointed morsels of instruction.

The opening sentence reads; “It’s easy to think of the view finder as simply a means of aiming the camera, but it’s much more creative to think of it as the photographer’s ‘canvas’, a space to be filled in the most pleasing and striking way possible” . It’s Sunday morning and I haven’t slept all night, I’m running on coffee and inspiration. I spent all night writing and half an hour of the early morning attempting to unblock my partners milk duct. Oh the joys of breast feeding. I throw on some clothes and bundle our son into the pram to get him into the daylight and hopefully off to sleep to give mummy a reprieve and our ears some rest. It works and an hour later he’s snoozing in his pram in the lobby while I fan the glowing embers of a coffee high still in its infancy.

My wife says we’re meeting her cousin and her cousin’s partner and that today will be a relatively mellow one. While I am listening of course I am also simultaneously admiring her face and figure. It dawns on me that my bias as her ever-adoring husband is getting in the way of taking technically good photos. It isn’t enough for her to look stunning, although that is a given, but my regard for the rest of the canvas needs to be more acute.

The viewfinder was always a pointing mechanism for me, the whole point and shoot philosophy is hard to unlearn but this was always about slowing down to take notice of the surrounding area. My wife says I tidy up too thoroughly and her chaos is in fact organised chaos and she knows exactly where everything is. It’s a loving point of contention that is a source of mild frustration and hilarity. I want the visual canvas to be perfect, out of sight out of mind. There must surely be a correlation between organising ones own habitat before venturing into the world each morning. Jordan Peterson’ sage voice echoes in my mind “tidy your room”.

We meet her cousin Keith and his partner Kate and swap nappies and bears for trees, hills and sunshine. The importance of swapping settings is important for mental health, being stuck in all day is no good. After we fight ecah other for five minutes over who gets coffee, my wife wins and several lattes later we are sat at a poppy monument that’s catching the sun perfectly.

I tentatively aim my viewfinder with a little more purpose and fit everyone into a shot with a background that isn’t distracting but interesting. The tidy tendency wants to get a more organised background but like many beautiful things, life is messy. You don’t always get to choose what’s in the background but you do get to appreciate who is in the forefront.

Make a one-time donation

Choose an amount


Or enter a custom amount


Your contribution is appreciated.


Leave a Comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s