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Photographing Red

Updated on February 14, 2014
CC BY-SA 2.0
CC BY-SA 2.0 | Source
Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)
Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0) | Source

I recently wrote an article that dealt with photographing exactly seven subjects at once and in one photograph. Seeing red is basically the same with some variation and it does not involve a specific number of subjects that must be present in any one image.

The theme is to capture photographs of subjects, any subjects, that prominently display the color. But this theme can be applied to any color and that is the beauty of it. You are not limited as much so long as you have the ability to locate subjects in whatever color you happen to choose.

It would be a good idea to do a little research into the meanings associated with the color you have chosen as this can give you some inspiration for your shoot. In the case of red, this is what is usually associated with this exciting color: "Red is the color of blood, rubies and strawberries. Next to orange at the end of the visible spectrum of light, red is commonly associated with danger, sacrifice, passion, fire, beauty, blood, anger, socialism and communism, and in China and many other cultures, with happiness." Wikipedia.

Your subjects should be as full of the chosen color as possible If there are any other colors present, then try to limit them to subtle hues, if you can't then at least try to either crop the image on the spot with the aid of your lens or do it post-processing with the aid of any digital editing program.

This does not mean to completely remove any other colors from the scene, but it does ask that any other colors be kept to a minimum. However, if the colors, other than your main, choice are complementing ones such as gold, black and several others that go very well with the color red, then they should be allowed to remain in the scene albeit try to frame them so that they do not overcome the main theme, in this case , red. A good technique is to frame them away from the center; the sides, the top and the bottom of the frame works well.

For still life avoid just capturing the reds by themselves if there are no other interesting or complementing elements; textures, shapes, angles are all good elements to include. Try to avoid the most "cliches" images such as red roses, red lips, red balls unless you can frame them in a completing set up and one that presents the scene in a pleasing arrangement. Looking for different angles and using different perspectives other than the usual gives you a better chance of capturing good quality images even if these images are of routinely and common photographed subjects.

Keep in mind that there are colored photographic filters that can add color hues to most any scene. It is worth considering using them if you find a good photogenic setup but it lacks the color that you are looking for.

Being creative and using all of your skills are keys to succeed in a field where there are many talented photographers who take thousands of photographs every single month.

Your work needs to distinguish itself from that of others in order for you to make a name for yourself. Mediocrity will not work. Be your own worst critic and only submit the best images that you can. Only then will you begin to be recognized as a photographer who strives for only the best.

As your work, skills and talent in the art as well as your portfolio begins to grow, many editors will begin to recognize that your work is good. They may not always use your images but they more than likely will keep you in mind when the right time and the right image from you comes across their desks.

Source
CC BY 2.0
CC BY 2.0 | Source

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