Jul 10, 2008

Location Scouting

Today I went location scouting with my little guy after lunch and again after dinner while Jacob watched the baby for an hour. I'm always on the lookout for good spots to take photos, but lately I've been working on finding locations close by. That way, when clients ask if I know a good spot to take photos, I have a few that I know well and that are easy to get to.

I've been using Google Maps lately to do some initial decision-making on where to go. Google Maps has satellite, terrain, and street views that are quite accurate. From those, I try to find local ponds, trails, and other spots I wouldn't ordinarily see on a regular map. (The first two photos from this post are from a beautiful little trail and pond area I found this way.)

This afternoon's project was to find out what the Big Creek Overlook area looked like. On the satellite view, I could see a nice open area (rare in tree-covered Alpharetta), and I thought a field or an open area like that might look great in some photos. Well, when I got there, I found that it was a residential area. I really loved the look of the field I could see from the road though. So with baby in arms, I knocked on the owner's door and asked him if I could go down and take some pictures of it. "Knock yourself out," he said. The second two pictures are from this lovely area.

An artist friend of mine once asked me how I compose a photograph, and I've been thinking about that question again today. A photograph is a two-dimensional object, but you can create the illusion of three dimensions by including a foreground (slightly out-of-focus), middle ground (in focus and where the subject of your photograph will be), and background (blurred nicely by a wide aperture and long focal length). The third picture demonstrates the kind of composition I'm talking about.

Then again, there are times when you want your photograph to have that two-dimensional quality. After my initial success with some silhouettes, I'm excited to try them again. So, after dinner tonight, I scouted out some great spots for silhouettes at Alpharetta High School. Now all I need are some people to put in my new locations!


  1. cool did you know I had a bolg

  2. Yes, Caroline. I did know about your blog. I will make sure to leave a comment there soon. You look so great in the pictures I took of you. Feel free to post some of them on your own blog.