Thursday, July 19, 2012

The Colour of Light

Is a rose still red in the dark?” When Michael posed the question in my Camera Craft course it made me really think about the complexity of light.  A rose is red because red is the only wave length of light in the visible spectrum that is not absorbed by the rose.  So – in a sense, red is what the rose is not…or what the rose rejects…

Steve & Graffitti L Paddington B&W BorderThere’s been a few intervening years between my physics classes at high school and my taking up photography as a hobby.  It was good to be reminded about the fact that what we see as colour is a function of the wavelength that reflects off an object.  For us humans to perceive colour, we need 3 things: a light source, an object to reflect the light and a sensor to receive and interpret it.  I learn in my camera course that colour is actually fluid and will change with the source of light, the object and the sensor.  The light source itself has its own colour….and this is why the concept of White Balance is so important in photography!


It has been fun learning about the complexity of light and becoming more aware of how important it is when taking a photograph. In photography, the direction from which the light is streaming in also plays a big part in making a good picture.  The light is best early morning or at dusk and as I start to take photographs in the fading light I become a little more aware of how much a tripod contributes to taking a good picture at night.  I’ve signed up to a weekend series of 5 classes in Camera Craft 2 at the Australian Centre for Photography.  Sunday became our day of going down to Paddington for my classes and later enjoying lunch somewhere special and discovering a new suburbs that I could photograph.  Steve discovered the Writer’s Cafe and loves spending the morning there, sipping a coffee and working on his research.  I love the classes but I think I almost love the afternoons more…discovering a suburb from a different perspective with Steve and my camera!     WB Sunlight

“If you want to go fast, go alone, but if you want to go far, go together.” African Proverb

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