Bordom Deflecting

I fully admit it, I want to be a photographer. I’m an engineer, a scientist even, but I figure it’s all the same thing anyways. Writing, mountaineering, smart materials, I don’t see much difference between these different facets of my life. My latest boredom deflecting strategy has been teaching myself portrait lighting. When you don’t live with any beautiful women there’s really only one good way to learn lighting: photographing yourself.


Even if beautiful women did live in my apartment, I still would have to tell them how to pose, how to smile, etc. When it’s just me, I know more or less what I’m looking for, so I just do it without delay or discussion. The beautiful women can factor in later, if necessary.


A cheap 15 year old digital camera (relative cheapness) with IKEA soft boxes can do a lot. You have to keep the shutter speed low for proper exposure, but that just means the poses have to be static. Trip the shutter release with a climbing axe, strike a pose and wait for the 2 second shutter delay to fire. Recompose, repeat, and repeat until something looks good.


Once you perfect the technique on yourself, you have photos to show beautiful women to get them to stand in front of your camera. To be honest, I’d also shoot ugly men as well; it’s the lighting, not the subject that really counts. Lighting can make beautiful women look ugly and mean and it can make grumpy old men look happy and aloof. I don’t subscribe to the notion that lighting is good or bad, it just is. It’s simply the combination of light reflecting off of and being absorbed by different surfaces.


Having a poor subject (like me) is probably better to start out with anyways. This way no one can throw things in my direction if they don’t agree with the results of the photo session.


Hmmmmm

5 thoughts on “Bordom Deflecting

  1. iluvskye says:

    So, basically, from reading the last entries, I conclude that you prefer fighting off boredom by gambling with destiny on Klettersteigs, taking photographs of yourself and having illusionary borderline experiences with Kinky Dutch Girls to actually having real beautiful women in your life …
    You make it sound quite exciting, too … But what about feeling the touch of a flesh and blood person… a sensation which I believe isn’t topped by anything in the world… Even though getting the posing, the smiling, the living together in tune might be more complicated than the do-it-yourself approach…?

  2. Mark says:

    Ah, point well taken; the truth is I can't help falling in love, and I've noted from past experiences that when love strikes it can be quiet fulfilling. The number of blog entries is generally directly related to my relationship status.

    A statistical treatment of the total blog entries plotted against my relationship status of the past two years would probably confirm this. Hence, the number of entries will drop off significantly when I'm in a rela-tionship as opposed to now, which might be characterized as a post relationship phase, where your humble blog writer has nothing fulfilling to do with his time.

  3. Erica says:

    Nope! Your blog entries coincide with my paper due dates. Reading them is always a perfect break. Have fun next week!

  4. Erica says:

    And sorry . . . that is not a cheap camera – not even relatively. Old – sure, good deal – yes, cheap – no. It sure does take sweet photos. I mean you do, of course. OK - back to my paper. I'm taking Anthropology of Education with my favorite professor – very cool and over my head so far.

  5. Amber says:

    Next time you are in the states and you want a different subject to practice lighting on, maybe we can help eachother out. I am always game for new photos, especially if the photographer can arrange the lighting to make the subject more beautiful…

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