Welcome to Photography:

Photography is the process of making pictures by means of capturing light on a light-sensitive medium, such as a sensor or film. Light patterns reflected or emitted from objects are recorded onto a sensitive medium or storage chip through a timed exposure. The process is done through mechanical, chemical or digital devices known as cameras.

The word comes from the Greek words φως phos ("light"), and γραφίς graphis ("stylus", "paintbrush") or γραφή graphê, together meaning "drawing with light" or "representation by means of lines" or "drawing." Traditionally the product of photography has been called a photograph. The term photo is an abbreviation; many people also call them pictures. In digital photography, the term image has begun to replace photograph.

Commercial photography

The commercial photographic world can be broken down to:

  • Advertising photography: photographs made to illustrate a service or product. These images are generally done with an advertising agency, design firm or with an in-house corporate design team.
  • Fashion and glamour photography: This type of photography usually incorporates models. Fashion photography emphasizes the clothes or product, glamour emphasizes the model. Glamour photography is popular in advertising and in men's magazines. Models in glamour photography may be nude, but this is not always the case.
  • Still life photography usually depicts inanimate subject matter, typically commonplace objects which may be either natural or man-made.
  • Editorial photography: photographs made to illustrate a story or idea within the context of a magazine. These are usually assigned by the magazine.
  • Photojournalism: this can be considered a subset of editorial photography. Photographs made in this context are accepted as a truthful documentation of a news story.
  • Portrait and wedding photography: photographs made and sold directly to the end user of the images.
  • Fine art photography: photographs made to fulfill a vision, and reproduced to be sold directly to the customer.
  • Landscape photography: photographs of different locations made to be sold to tourists as postcards

The market for photographic services demonstrates the aphorism "one picture is worth a thousand words," which has an interesting basis in the history of photography. Magazines and newspapers, companies putting up Web sites, advertising agencies and other groups pay for photography.

Many people take photographs for self-fulfillment or for commercial purposes. Organizations with a budget and a need for photography have several options: they can assign a member of the organization, hire someone, run a public competition, or obtain rights to stock photographs.

Wildlife photography is the act of taking photographs of wildlife.

Coyote Photograph

The art of good wildlife photography is regarded as being one of the more challenging forms of photography as it has several different requirements.

  • Being a technically sound photographer, thus being able to expose correctly to have the desired effect of a wildlife photograph.
  • Advanced photographic equipment. While wildlife photographs can be taken effectively using basic equipment it is facilitated by being able to use more sophisticated equipment. For example, 600mm lenses in conjunction with the latest autofocus camera bodies are generally required for bird photography. However different equipment is needed depending on the situation.
  • Good field craft skills. Wildlife in general is difficult to approach thus a knowledge of the animal's behaviour will be needed in order to be able to predict actions. An ability to stalk animals effectively is often also required when attempting to get closer to wildlife. Hides are often required when photographing more timid subjects as these effectively conceal the photographer, although they prevent the photographer from moving in order to re-position a photograph.

Wedding photography is a major commercial endeavor that supports the bulk of the efforts for many photography studios or independent photographers.

With the advent of the digital revolution in photography, today’s contemporary wedding photographer needs to stay abreast of all the latest developments in the industry.

Depending upon the demands of the client, a contemporary wedding photographer will usually need to provide some or all of the following:

  • Formal portraiture in the studio (for either the wedding and/or the engagement photos).
  • Outdoor photography (often at a park, beach or scenic location on the day of the wedding and/or for engagement photos).
  • Indoor photography at a church, temple or other private venue during the ceremony and reception.
  • Both posed and candid (photojournalistic) shots of the wedding couple and their guests at the religious or civil ceremony and the reception that follows.
  • Digital services such as digital prints or slides shows.
  • Albums (either traditional or the more contemporary flush mount type of album).

During the film era, practitioners favored color negative film and medium-format cameras, especially by Hasselblad.

Today, many more weddings are photographed with digital SLR cameras as the digital convenience provides quick detection of lighting mistakes and allows creative approaches to be reviewed immediately.


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