We are all familiar with shadows and, at this time of year, as the days grow shorter, the shadows become longer.
However, the theme for this MIG meeting is not just about subjects casting shadows, it is intended more to encourage the use of darker tones to create mood. You could, for example, underexpose your shot to keep the highlights and to accentuate the shadows. You can also use post-processing to darken or lighten the shadows, your software may have presets to help you with this. Embrace the darkness and don’t be afraid of losing detail. Use black areas and negative space to enhance the mood. A dark background can draw attention to your subject or, conversely, a bright background will lead to silhouettes that can be a great way of showing detail. It’s also worth checking if your camera has any artistic filters that lend themselves to this type of contrasty image straight out of camera eg Olympus users check out the ART option, Fuji users have film emulations.
You will find some tips for shadow photography here and, at the bottom of the page, you’ll find a great video by Sean Tucker, Embrace your Shadows: A lesson for Light and Life – it’s part photography and part philosophy. If you enjoy this then check our Sean’s YouTube and Instagram feeds.
Finally, although not alone, Street is a great genre for capturing shadows. Think of Fan Ho’s pictures where shadows are an integral part of the images and part of the story telling. There’s also Street Noir photography to consider. Try some side-lit subjects with deep shadows or make a street light a feature as an oasis of light in the dark. Or use Street Noir photography to make the subject appear in silhouette. Architecture also works well, with or without people in the frame. The possibilities are endless, and York’s ginnels and snickleways will, of course, provide ideal locations and inspiration for some of your shots.
Please submit up to 5 monochrome images to firstname.lastname@example.org using WeTransfer by 14 November 2023.