Surprisingly, so far, I have never spoken about photography, which currently happens to be my number 1 interest area. Prior to starting this blog a few months ago I was completely unaware of any aspects of food photography. Although I ve owned a DSLR for a long time, never really experimented with it ..till now. As I started to discover it(Hello Manual mode!), I have fallen in love with it. At times I find myself cooking just so that I can take photos! But I believe I am not alone, most bloggers would agree too. Having just started with it, I consider myself a `baby` when it comes to food photography. There is so much to learn and explore.
I find myself reading countless articles and books on food photography. And anyone who is interested on this topic, would follow Simone`s `JungleFrog Cooking`. I love the photography challenges on her site.I read through the posts and the participants posts. But never dreamt of participating considering how amateur( I am using that word loosely) I am. Then came this post from Simone this month which has motivated me to push away all my hesitations and simply participate. And what an amazing experience it has been. No amount of reading can come close to actually going through the exercise.
The challenge this month is On location and there were plenty of reasons( may be excuses) not to participate that came to my mind. I just had 10 days left because the challenge ends on 31 Mar…its snowing….little miss P`s (my 5 month old) naps are way off any schedule restricting the time I can spend on photography. I decided to give a shot at it anyways.
So this weekend, myself and little miss P head out to the local market saturday early morning with our camera and a diaper bag. Yes..my late decision about participating meant that I had to take little miss P along with me. I decided to go to the main market of Burkliplatz, Zurich as it offers more variety and thus more opportunities for interesting photos.
On reaching `the location`, to my horror I realised that it wasnt the day of the local market at all. The dummy that I am, had mistakenly assumed it was on saturday, where as in fact the market day is friday. By then it had started to rain and my hopes of participating where starting to look frail.
But luckily, I knew of another local market which occured on saturdays and in a split second I made the decision to head over there. So another 45 mins later we finally arrived at `the new location`. The colourful stalls were beaming with fresh produce. Tulips, asparagus indicating that spring is hopefully around the corner in spite of all the snow we are still witnessing. Cheese, Olives, pasta, breads, pumpkins too..all in one place. I was giddy with excitement and not knowing where to start. I visit the market quite often, but the photography part made it all different.
As I started to click photos, the challenges started to unfold.
- I was so used to shooting in the controlled atomsphere of my home. But now, I had no control over the set up.
- I had to be fast and the settings I shoot with didnt work anymore. I had to bring down the ISO. Luciky, it was a cloudy day and I didnt have to worry about any harsh light.
- I am not used to shooting with people meaning strangers, so that was new as well. I was hesitant so subconsciously, I was sticking to my comfort zone and going for still shots.
- As it was raining, some of the stalls were partly covered. So I struggled with the white balance and exposure.
- Little miss P was getting cranky in her pram. But well ..thats just me and nothing to do with photography :)
When I got back home and studied my photos, I wanted to change everything and could find a million things that were wrong with the photos. And yet they never occurred to me while shooting. That I guess can only be overcome with practice practice practice. I couldnt think of posting any of them. But again I was reminded of Simone`s post and stuck with the decision to participate.
This exercise was such a great way to learn and I really look forward to taking my camera out with me more often.