Nocturnography - Finding Light In Darkness
In the fall of 2007, I went to the Greek Islands with Wilderness Travel and Dan Heller (danheller.com). My goal was to learn more about digital photography and get some good exercise – we walked 8-10 miles a day, photographing our way across some of the most beautiful parts of the Greek Islands. Dan is a pro photographer and often goes out on Wilderness tours to take photos for their catalog; however, on ths tour he was available to help others with their photography. During the day, we would walk and take pictures; then Dan would review them that night and we would decide what to do the next day. Our photography was all done during the daylight hours.
Tholaria, Amorgos, Greece
Near the end of our tour, we visited the island of Amorgos, which is not far from Santorini, Greece. One evening we all went out to photograph a particularly great sunset. As we were walking back to the hotel, Dan noticed this great shot of a classic Greek church with the small town of Aigiali in the background. He pointed out the shot and starting taking photographs. I immediately went into a panic! What do I do? It was dark! My camera would not focus and the metering system was flashing an error. (Okay, I could not even see the display but something was not working right.) Dan fired off two or three shots before I could figure out how to get into Manual mode. With his help, I took control over my camera and the world of photography as I knew it has never been the same. Not only did it open up a new way for me to express myself photographically, but I learned a new skill that helped with the rest of my photography.
In 2009, I decided to get my stuff on the web. Remembering what night photography did for me, I wondered if others could benefit from learning more about it? Would the web be a good place to make that happen? I gave this a lot of thought and decided to go for it – but what should I name it? After a lengthy search, I came up with the word “nocturnography”. Marriam-Webster defines it as:
"nocturnography (noun) : Images collected by way of film or digital cameras during periods of darkness without the benefit of sunlight; as in between sunset and sunrise.”
This appeared to covers a wide range of lighting conditions, from night to low-light and even light painting! I loved it! So I purchased the domain name nocturnography.com and there it sat for three whole years! Part of the problem was due to my reservations about publishing on the web and part of it was personal – but that is another story.
This year, I got the bug to revamp my website and decided that I would convert over to Squarespace.
I want this to be a sharing website. I plan to include material from others, not just my own. I hope to inspire and to be inspired. I want it to be a place that you will return often to learn more about using and shaping light into a new art form – one that involves the extremes of low light photography.
To that end, I came up with the tagline “Finding Light In Darkness”. There is a double meaning implied here, one that covers “finding” the light in developing your photographic art and the other to express the way I felt that first time I tried night photography – it was an epiphany for me to learn that I could do this and the “darkness” was the unknown of how to create images at night. With your help, we can make this a great website – one worth visiting many times!
If you run across something that you would like to share, send it to me. I can be reached in the “contact” section.