Visual Literacy


© Joe DiMaggio

To all the ships at sea, I remember having a conversation with Alfred Eisenstaedt and the topic of lighting came up. Ron Thompson, a Nikon tech rep, said “Everybody knows that Sam Sam the Umbrella man invented the photo white umbrella sometime in the late 40s”. I had no reason to doubt it, but Eisy chimed in and reminded us that there’s nothing new in photography; when you think you’ve discovered something for the first time, it may have been done by someone else at an earlier date. Ten years later, one of my mentors, Paul Laddin, gifted me a book on early portraiture, and in there around 1898 was a photographer with a white umbrella and a flash gun in front of it. So what does this teach us about photography? We all strive to be unique and be the best that we can be. Sometimes we succeed, and other times, well let’s not go there. Negativity is a bad thing. I stumbled across this image I made in Tucson, done with a Canon A? camera, 15mm lens, Gitzo monopod, pickup truck, and safety harness. I believe the numbers were 1/15th of a second at f16, ISO 25. Go out and make some great photos, it’s all good. Joe D


One response to “Visual Literacy

  1. I love this shot. And I agree with what you said about striving to be unique. We succeed and we fail. Whenever I fail, I look at it as an opportunity to learn and draw inspiration from it. 🙂

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