One Colour Frame Challenge
The story behind one colour in close-up photography.
In October 2020, Close-Up Photographer of the Year announced a photo challenge: One Colour Frame.
This challenge required the shot to be a close-up plus focus on one colour.
Sounds simple. But oh, how complex.
The problem is, how do you find something that has contrast, interest, and is close up? I tried out several ideas, but the one that landed as a finalist (yay!) was “Intimate Touch.”
By the way, CUPOTY is based in the UK, so no matter how many times Grammarly warned me that I spelled “colour” wrong, I honored the English version. And it was a lot of warnings, ugh!
Everyday objects photography.
These aren’t body parts, people. What were you thinking?
These are two innocent organic hen eggs, intimately touching.
After trying different angles, adjusting the light for some shadow in the curves, and picking out a background paper that would complement the two eggs, I got this shot. However, I took sixty photos in the process. Yes, sometimes it’s a lot of trial and error. Or maybe someone has a perfectionist issue.
Macro photo techniques.
Helping others with photography tips
Who knew a few years back that I would ever achieve such a goal, given that I just started photography about five years ago. And who would guess I would be asked to share my top tips for achieving a shot like this? Crazy! I can imagine myself five years ago looking at these photos and asking, “wow, why don’t my images look like that?”
This challenge taught me many things about shapes, shading, and color. When I was asked for my technique tips, I spent time reflecting on how my practice and persistence have paid off over time.
Abstract Close-Up Photography
If you look at all these finalists and also examine the shortlist of all the photos the CUPOTY jurors had to sort through, there is an overwhelming number of them that are abstract. Close-up photography certainly lends itself to this genre, but add the constraint of just one color, and the game is definitely leaning towards the abstract.
How I came up with this close-up photo idea.
If you take a look at this page on CUPOTY’s challenge page, you can read how I came up with the idea to shoot organic eggs. As I held a carton of them intent on making scrambled eggs, I realized each had a slightly different shape and color. I hid my two favorites for their modeling session. The rest were breakfast.
Ann Newman is a photographer, writer, and creator of Annstracts who tells the stories behind her pictures. As a former, professionally-trained salesperson, Ann understands that people want to solve problems or accelerate growth for a better future. Her insights, symbolism, and meanings from her pictures give her stories a positive spin. You might find Ann near her home in Phoenix, bent down looking at the tiniest details of a bug, patting any nearby dog, or asking “why” an awful lot.