Photography with Calvin

On the second IBeWell Friday of the year, Calvin and I decided that we would meet up and enjoy our day off-screen. We approached this day without a plan, however as we were together, I had suggested to Calvin that we try taking some photographs later towards the afternoon. In total, we took photos from 4-6 P.M. We took a car around Colombo and began to scout for potential areas that would provide us with good photography opportunities. Near the One Galle Face Mall, we stumbled upon a new garden area that was finalizing it’s construction. It was located right behind it, and actually officially opens on Monday, November 30th. Because of this, there was no one in sight and we were able to take photos with everything there, which may have been with or without permission at first. However we actually met the architect of the project and he was quite fond of our photos, allowing us to access all areas of the premises to shoot, even on the grass.


Calvin began by guiding me through all the different camera controls and functions. The camera that we used was a Sony A7iii and the using the camera itself was actually quite intuitive. The main point of emphasis Calvin instructed me on was what I made the focus of my photo, as it is crucial to the end product.

Initially, I began by showing Calvin what I was capable of doing. He asked me to take his camera and take photo of him standing by one of the arches. My first attempt wasn’t too bad, but he pointed out that I needed to make sure the focus of the tree aligned within one of the thirds and that I needed to make sure my holding of the camera was much more steady and straight. Below are the first two photos that I took.


As seen in the images, I was able to reflect on my initial decisions and upon gaining constructive criticism, was able to take a much improved photo.


Calvin taught me many different basic photography techniques, such as the usage of leading lines. These natural lines enable the viewers to draw their attention towards a specific entity within the photo, which in this case would be Calvin posing. Other things I learnt included an abundance of different camera settings that I was able to change depending on what I wanted to capture. An example of this included the usage of the exposure control dial. This was very helpful, especially since at the beginning of our shoot, the lighting was very harsh and there were quite a few darker shadows around the area.




After an hour passed, the sun became much more forgiving and we started to take photos during the beginning of the sunset, offering us ample lighting. Below are some of the photos that we took.














Calvin challenged me to embark on my own original idea/concept that he would pose for. One of the ideas that I had involved the usage of the large tree that I originally took here. The tree looked almost as if it had come straight from a storybook, as it was the perfect size, luscious and colorful, while also being surrounded in vivid, freshly cut grass. We had special permission to be on the grass, which meant that my vision could actually take place. When I first took the picture, the tree took a majority of the focus of the photo, meaning that I would have to get up close and low in order to capture a similar angle with Calvin as my focal point. My vision for the picture would be to give off the impression of contemplation and tranquility, so I ensured that I found the appropriate lighting and angles to do this.













There were quite a few issues with the orientation of the first photo, which I was able to fix in the second one. Furthermore, I also incorporated a bit more of the grass in order to add  to the effect that I was going for within the picture. The final picture that I took was the one below, which I believed was a lot better in terms of placing enough emphasis on the grass so that it did not look completely blurred like in the second photo, but also still making Calvin and the tree my focal point.

The final photo



Overall, I believe that this photoshoot allowed me to increase my awareness in my strengths and weaknesses within photography, while also allowing me to develop new skills. This was a very good opportunity to collaborate with others, and I hope that we will be able to embark on more projects similar to this together.


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