Don’t Delete! Not Just Yet…

Gerry van der Walt All Authors, Penny 2 Comments

With a certain task in mind for an exciting and new project I am working on, and aiming to secure the final details in the next week or so (mysterious, yes?), I ended up looking at images that I had taken around at this exact time a year ago.

Scrolling through these images I took at Singita, a constant ‘No. no. no!’ was running through my mind as I went from one image to another. We had spent an incredible morning with a female leopard and her juvenile cub, and let me tell you, the interaction between the two made all our hearts beat with excitement and happiness and the beauty in front of us.

Not really focusing properly on the images, as I was looking for one that I had processed a while back, I stumbled upon an image that I have never considered before as having potential or having something about it.

But it did catch my eye.

Something about the image made me stop and spend time looking at it. And it wasn’t the magnificently over-warm tone of it that made me grimace and try figure out what on earth had puked yellow all over the image…

No, it wasn’t that…

The colours did catch my attention – the potential in the stunning grey/blue of the sky and the warm light that was highlighting the one cat, seeming to hold it apart from the rest of the image, but mainly it was the actual moment that I had seemed to have unintentionally captured.

After processing the image by cropping in slightly on the left (to make my composition stronger and make the image’s focus more direct), underexposing it slightly, using a cooler toned white balance and then specifically brushing a colder tone to the cat, I was left with an image that took me happily by surprise.

© Penny Robartes - Wildlife and Nature Photographer

So, what am I trying to convey in this post, you ask?

Don’t delete your images straight away.

Give them, and yourself, time to breathe. It is only at the stage that I am in now that enabled me to look back and see the image for the potential it had. For what it could be and was.

The only images I delete straight away are ones that are unintentionally blurry, out of focus, and where the subject is horribly cut off in places where it shouldn’t be.

That’s about it for me.

I dont think I have otherwise deleted an image. I like to think that sometime, I will be able to go back with fresh eyes and an open mind and find the reason why I took the images in the first place.

Penny Robartes

Comments 2

  1. Carol Bell

    Thanks for sharing that with us Penny. It has made me stop and think. Going back to my spiders I deleted one where the spider looked as if it was “twanging violin strings” …. I thought I would get a better photo…….. Never seen a spider do that again. I really love your Photo!!!!

  2. Penny Robartes

    Thanks so much Carol!

    Sounds like an incredibly interesting image! Not all photos call to you when you have taken them. I have personally noticed that it takes time for me to see the image as it is, rather than have my feelings affect how I read it.

    Try only look and process your images a couple of days after you have taken them (and dont look at them before that!) as many times we see them attached with the memory, feeling and emotion we had at the moment of pressing the shutter.


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