Friday, November 18, 2011

Getting the Shot III

So, on this lovely winter day I was heading up to Logan Square to check off another block in my quest to photograph all 77 community areas in Chicago. Getting off at California Ave on the Blue Line, I waited for the crowd from my train to disperse and switched lenses to my 16-35mm to get some wide-angle shots on the platform. Satisfied, I went downstairs to head south on California. As I got underneath the el, more or less the scene you see above presented itself: a bleak Chicago winter, the imposing skeleton of the el and a solitary girl walking north. A shot instantly formed in my mind and I set up to wait for her to get into position. I brought my camera up, steadied myself to take the shot, zoomed in and…crap. I’ve got my 16-35mm on and not 24mm-105mm like I thought. She obviously wasn’t going to wait for me to unscrew myself so I racked the zoom and popped off a couple of shots at the long and short end of my 16-35mm.

Now don’t get me wrong, I LIKE the way this shot turned out. It wasn’t exactly what I wanted going in, but I think it turned out all right. And while the framing wasn’t exactly what I wanted, I think the emotion – the feeling - I was going for did come through. I haven’t experimented with this type of shooting enough – the idea of going out and shooting to capture a particular feeling. The only one that I’ve tackled with any sort of rigor – half assed though it may be – is addressed in this shot: that of the Chicago winter. It’s an ongoing fascination of mine to capture the essence – the Platonic Form if you will – of the Chicago winter. I’m not sure that this shot does that by itself – but it’s in the right direction. 

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