Thursday, 22 October 2015

Wasn't Expecting That.

A short and (as usual) somewhat ill thought out post - but bear with me whilst I ramble. I often write these things as the ideas pop into my head... but it's hopefully an interesting one nonetheless. Here I was, sat listening to the generic new releases and on popped a recent number 1 (maybe it still is?) - I Wasn't Expecting That... by someone vaguely linked to Ed Sheeran. Anyway, it's a nice song.

Then, browsing Facebook I came across this wonderful photograph by Mark Rasbeary from Willance' Leap in the Richmond group... of those amazing autumnal bursts from stormy skies. The kinda thing you can take many trips out for on moody looking days and come back with nothing... always unexpected and always spectacular. But is it really unexpected? If it truly was, why would we keep putting ourselves there?

Anyway, these two overlapping coincidences somewhat tap into a thought process I've been pondering quite a bit these last few days - largely thanks to other people. Stood under stormy Welsh skies last week with two non-photographers... explaining exactly how the evening would unfold and I'd get the dramatic light I wanted whilst they quite fancied heading off early to the pub... I got it right. It's partly due to being well versed in knowing how conditions unfold, but that's highly location dependent... this new location could have done anything but also partly pure hope and/or expectation. They would never have expected it, but I did.

Then on last Saturday's tutorial... an equally dismal looking situation and I think my hope came across as somewhat bemusing. This time, I didn't get it spectacularly right but my expectation of a dim, haze-ridden sun below the thick clouds did come to fruition... a disappointing but successful prediction, it wasn't as boring as it could have been but it wasn't exactly sensor-stretching either.

So I wonder, is my expectation of a good outcome in any way helpful to the actuality of a good outcome? By being more positive about it and waiting it out when others have gone home must surely be a good thing... but how many really would go home having already invested an hour or two in composition scouting? Do any of you ever give up like this?

Even in the worst conditions I maintain the (realistic) hope that some flash of light will come - do we all do this?

As a bonus ramble... this links in nicely to a little annoyance I've had for a while now (when I say 'little', I'm being polite) - any non-Outdoor Photography readers can stop here. There have been many good points made by Chris Weston in his 'Photographer's guide to life' section... but there have also been many hugely misleading and anti-scientific points made. The idea that previsualising something has any effect on the real world outside your own conscious and then throwing some 'quantum' words around to pseudo-scientifically make it plausible to the general public is quite ridiculous. Quantum mechanics and entanglement is a wonderful and interesting theory and concept - but to misuse it in such ways is harmful to everyone - both artist and scientist alike. I have no idea how it was meant, either literally or in some metaphorical sense, but it's irrelevant as the average reader will likely be no quantum physicist either - and so the risk is run of it being taken literally by the vast majority of people.

There... one thing off my chest...

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