Contributing photographer close-up: David Carlos

David Carlos with one of his photos.

Publisher’s note: Here is another in a series of profiles on our contributing photographers.

I’ve been interested in photography ever since I was a kid, when my mother would let me borrow her Fujica 35-millimeter film camera. In high school and in college, I took black-and-white photography classes, developing negatives and enlarging prints. But the time and cost of developing always kept me from doing much picture-taking.

When digital cameras came out, I really took on photography as a hobby. Mistakes could be made, and the consequences weren’t costly. All you had to do was delete the bad pictures and start all over again.

Here’s what I try to achieve with my photographs:
1. Composition: Am I following the rule of thirds? Is my subject on the left or right third of my frame (or upper or lower third of my frame)?
2. Perspective: Always find a different point of view, an angle or location that’s different than the norm. Get down on the floor if necessary.
3. Lighting: Is the sun behind me, not in front of me? Do I really need to photograph during high noon, or can it wait until later in the afternoon when the light is softer and shadows make a subject more interesting?
4. Emotion: My favorite subjects are people, because of the range of emotions I can capture. But I don’t like posed shots. I’d rather capture people at a party as they’re talking to each other. Facial expressions then are more natural.

And don’t worry about getting the most fancy camera. Use a disposable camera, iPad, or cell phone. “The best camera is the one with you.”

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