Squint to pre-visualize your photograph
I heard someone tell me once “squint when you’re looking at a scene”. I remember thinking of my poor vision in grade school which forced me to squint at the black board. This prompted my teacher to contact my mother and I wore pair after pair of glasses for years. I’m not talking about squinting to see better. I’m saying squint to force the scene in front of you out of focus and fuzzy. You may be saying “but this limits what we’re seeing” – exactly! Limited vision is exactly what we need to “see” the overall image. Think about it, our brain gets all excited by the “stuff” we’re looking at and sometimes forgets the value range and compositional components which make a great photograph. This is where squinting will help.
1) We stop seeing individual “things” in a scene and start seeing the larger design elements (i.e. leading lines, rule of thirds, positive and negative areas, etc.)
2) Squinting reduces the saturation of color, so again color is slightly removed as a distraction, and we can see the overall layout and design of the photography subject.
3) We can very easily see the contrast value range of lights and darks in the image. In other words, we can see if there are any areas with extreme highlights and/or shadows which may cause issues making a properly exposed photograph. You must know what your camera can NOT do.
If you have a photo tip or would like to have a photo question answered, leave me a comment below. Happy shooting!