Saturday, March 14, 2015

Perfection: One Leg Shorter than the Other

Kim Mosley
I once had a teacher in college who asked me, “isn’t it terrible being as stupid as you are?” To which I replied, “Oh, not at all, I have so much to learn.” It is much easier when you don't know anything. If everyone had one leg shorter than the other they wouldn't look down at their own legs with disdain. But they do know. When they buy a pair of shoes they discover they have to buy two pairs of shoes… or lop off some toes, or go to a speciality shop.  

I've returned to taking pictures with a real camera rather than an iPhone. I had to have the perfect camera. Well, not exactly. But at least a really good one. But now the question arises: what pictures should I be making?

I forgot that with real cameras, when you shoot in low light, only part of the picture is sharp. I did a picture of a bouquet of bananas and my wife complained that the stem was out of focus. I had missed out of focus. There is a term bokeh that refers to how a lens renders something out of focus. My lens is suppose to do that well. I love the soft look of things. It reminds me of how tentative we are. We don't really stop here or there. We are mostly hot air. And when we have a fever, we are even a little warmer.

But back to the challenge of photography. Such a simple idea of walking around with this box and telling it to "shoot" at just the right time. But when is that?

So I’ve had it with focusing. My camera only has manual focus and it is a little hard to see whether I'm in focus or not, so I ordered some focusing screen from Taiwan that is suppose to improve that. But in the mean time, I remembered that a student used to call infinity “eternity,” so I wondered why don't I just focus on eternity and let everthing else fall where they are. So what is close to me will be bokehed, and what is far will be sharp. I gave it a try and my wife said “scary.”

P.S. I got the focusing screen from Taiwan, but alas, I’m told it won’t fit in my camera. As to not focusing, I was showing my pics to a friend today and when she saw the out of focus pictures she said, “Ugh, out of focus.”