To further my exploration into photography I am attending an evening course at the Stellenbosch academy for design and photography. For week 3 our job was to shoot some urban landscapes, with the challenge to think hard about ‘intent’ – the underlying intention of the photograph.
This was odd for me as I usually shoot landscapes because it looks interesting or there is inherently some compositional aspect that I appreciate. Which may be an intention by itself. But thinking about intention prior to actually taking a shot proved challenging. I immediately knew where I wanted to shoot, but, for the life of me I could not fathom the ‘intention’ up front.
In many books I have read about photography it is suggested that one ‘pre-visualise’ an image – to help you see what you want before you have it. Problem is, if you havent seen it, how do you pre-visualise ?
My first stop was a fly-over.. Spending time on an incomplete fly-over, images presented themselves to me, one an abstract, another a view of the city and finally an image that may tell some kind of story. Intent?
Interesting structure found, could be abstract, maybe black and white, HDR?
The uneasy sense of standing in the middle of a road in a city, low point of view, layered depth, more people in the distance,sharp focus from close to far – strong contrast, moody clouds, slight vignette?
The next day I went to an old power station. I often saw it whilst driving on a highway that passes it and my eyes always lingered on its structure and strong lines.
I knew beforehand that I had a clearer view of what I wanted to present, but now it came to how I wanted to present the power station – as majestic, powerful, but also old.
Which may bring me to the obvious (but not for me!) conclusion that intent could be emergent and in is only complete once post-processing is done..