So here’s the thing.
Even a careless observer of the BSP will note there are a whole lotta snapshots and videos charting the project’s progress. They are there to inform; they are rarely shot with an artist’s eye. In my opinion, snapping pix doesn’t justify earning any kind of badge in photography.
But the tasks for the “Camera Shots” badge are disturbingly rudimentary, and in some cases they’re archaic. I know the tasks are written for ‘tweens, but just take a look at these:
- Learn about three different types of cameras and three types of film.
- To me, both rudimentary and archaic.
- Take at least five photographs that focus on the environment.
- Take at least five pictures to tell a story to illustrate a children’s poem or book.
- Both of these are straightforward and good subject matter, but five is our minimum? Too easy! Try taking 50 and choosing your best five instead.
- Select one of your best photographs, enlarge it and create a special frame for it. Or select one of your videotapes, record music or dialogue to accompany it, and show it to others.
- Never mind that I’ve done these things, I’m troubled by the whole videotape thing. I haven’t seen tape in years.
- Learn how to remove a completed roll of film or tape, insert a new roll or tape, or transfer digital images onto a computer.
- Again, we get back to the whole film and tape thing. And as for transferring digital images, I’ve only done it about 10,000 times now (seriously, that’s probably an accurate estimate).
Our world and our tools are now predominantly digital — and that’s fabulous. We can take gazillions of photos without concern for the cost of film and development. We can take them on our phones. We can tweak them digitally, adjusting size, brightness, contrast, hue, tone, and more. We can add all kinds of cool effects. We can post them to online galleries.
And we should. At least, I think that’s the kind of work that should go into earning a badge on photography.
Introducing the New Photo Blog: Big Scout Photography
Why a sister blog? Well, rethinking — and updating — these tasks for a Big Scout like myself means assembling several collections of images, carefully shot and edited, carefully displayed. This blog just isn’t designed or intended to do that. But Big Scout Photography is a full-on photo blog.
I began shooting images for this blog in 2011, and the first collection is up. I’ll introduce it formally in the next post, but if you’re interested in a sneak peak at “The Hangover,” enjoy!