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Texture/ Still Life. Finding texture in a photo. Texture is tactile not visual Shiny metal is visual Driftwood is texture Definition Normally a relatively small scale surface characteristic that is associated with tactile quality. Lack of texture. Texture. Still Life.

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Texture/ Still Life

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Texture/Still Life

Finding texture in a photo

  • Texture is tactile not visual

  • Shiny metal is visual

  • Driftwood is texture

  • Definition

    • Normally a relatively small scale surface characteristic that is associated with tactile quality.

Lack of texture


Still Life

  • Pose an object(s) that has a tactile quality.

  • Side lighting will help illuminate the texture, but

    • Heavy texture, posed, will have the same effect.

What is still life?

  • Typically we think of still life as indoor and posed.

    • Flowers, bowl of fruit, tea kettle, sea shells on a table.

  • For our purposes we will not shoot indoors because we would need flash.

  • The following examples are indoors and have extraordinary lighting.

Example of still life

Our Still Life

  • First, the subject is outdoors.

  • The subject(s) is (are) posed.

    • At least it is still permanently” posed

  • Directional lighting from the side to create shadows to the left or right.

  • Examples follow…


Late in day-directional light

See texture in the wall or cobblestone

One can almost feel the braids on the rope.

However, the DOF is too shallow. Shoot at f/11 or f/16!

How is texture created?

  • What type of light would create the most texture?

    • Directional lighting

    • From a low angle. Early morning or late afternoon.

    • Look at the available shadows.

      • Sharp edge is direct

      • Soft edged is diffused

Mid day photo, little texture because lighting is directly overhead

Side lighting – lots of texture

More on light

  • Direct or directional light creates HIGH CONTRAST (lots of black and white tones) shadows and highlights.

  • Diffused or soft light produces LOW CONTRAST (gray tones) shadows and highlights.

  • Observe the kind of shadows on your subject. Try to find subjects with lots of different tones. Remember not to shoot directly into your light source.

Front lighting – using on-camera flash. Face is flat.

“Loop” lighting

From the side.

Face is 3D.

Diffused because of clouds. A wonderful photo, but No texture.

Back lighting. Nice photo but NO texture.

Directional side lighting in the late afternoon.

  • Consider the time of day.

  • Early morning and very late afternoon

    • Create natural side lighting

    • Enhances the texture

9:30 a.m.-Little Texture

1:00 p.m. no texture

6:20 p.m. closer, more texture

Again: midday, sun overhead

Again, just before sundown

Step by step

  • Locate an interesting subject. Photograph the subject from different angles.

  • Photograph more than one subject.

  • All exposures for this ( and most others) must be outdoors.

  • No flash.

  • Fill the frame with your texture(s).

  • Don’t use smooth surfaces for this assignment.

Other help

  • Don’t stand back from your subject. A tree in the distance has no texture.

  • Don’t use dirt (sand dunes are different) or tree bark

Be careful of back focus and missing your subject.

Double check your focus, then check it again.

Bracket each photo. Correct; one faster; one slower

Grading-2 different negatives

  • Uniqueness of the subject. Would you put this on your wall?

  • Effective lighting to create texture.

  • Overall image quality .

  • Is the image sharp?

  • Image must be “spotted”. We’ll get that training next week.

  • Two final images and contact sheet, all 8x10.

  • EXTRA CREDIT: Turn in a third 8x10

  • Contrast be used with allfinal prints.

Sample Texture

Midday, Flat lighting

Minutes before sundown-No Filter

Not the waiter, look at the walls

Contrast Filters

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