It's All About the Light

Several years ago I enrolled in a photography class at Lansing Community College. On the first night of class the instructor handed out the syllabus and began the class with these five words: “It’s all about the light!”

Lake Superior near Pictured Rocks - October, 2013

Before that night, I had considered myself a "photographer" for about thirty-five years.  I had photographed more family celebrations, vacations and school events than anyone in my family cares to remember.  For a short time -in the dark ages of the seventies and film- I taught photography classes at Jackson Community College, made a little money selling photos and had photos published in a couple of books.  But until that first night of class, I never thought about photography in that singular way… It’s all about the light!

Of course, light is everything to a photographer. Sometimes there's too much; often there's too little. Photographers fret about the direction of light, the intensity, contrast and color. We see light as indoor, outdoor, natural, mixed, fluorescent, warm, cool, filtered, mottled, reflected, refracted, the list goes on and on. And that’s light before it gets to the camera.

Inside the camera, light is bent by the lens, timed by the shutter and restricted by the aperture setting. The light that finally hits the sensor causes a brief electronic jolt that becomes, with a bit of processing, the image.

Without light photographers have nothing and so light really is what photography is all about.  And that's how my blog got its name.  I hope you take some time to click the heading, "It's All About the Light," at the top of my Home page and read a little bit or a lot.