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The Camera Never Lies!

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Rob Rob | 11:20 UK time, Monday, 7 February 2011

Hello. It's good to be back on the staff blog again. This week I thought I'd talk about my passion for photography. Both taking and looking at photographs is a great pastime and I've been inspired by a recent landscape photography exhibition I went to see.

I take my camera with me everywhere and particularly enjoy taking a picture of a view or a landscape. Other people prefer to photograph people or take portraits but I think sometimes people get in way of the view but there are exceptions as you can see below.

A tea picker

What type of photography do you prefer?

Lightning strike over Sydney

No tricks! A real photo of a lightning strike over Sydney, Australia.

View of the Scilly Isles

Aerial view of the Isles of Scilly

Are you familiar with the saying 'a picture tells a thousand words'? Well, it's true! A photo captures a moment in time and when you look at it, it brings back the memories, feelings and emotions of that moment. It's also an accurate record of that moment which is why some people say 'the camera never lies'.

Photos of the birth of my children are obviously priceless but so too are some special places where I have snapped an amazing view.
Taking a snap is an informal way of saying 'take a photo'. A snap, really implies it is a casual and brief picture possibly taken on a 'point and press' camera. A serious photographer would be using a more sophisticated camera with changeable lenses and where you can alter the aperture and shutter speed. I would like to think I'm like this but inevitably I put my camera into automatic mode!

Kew Gardens

Large leaves at the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew in London.

View in The Maldives

Storm approaching over the sea in the Maldives

The great thing about photography is it is global. All around the World someone is taking a photo and it doesn't matter what language you speak because a photo can be understood by anyone. Would you agree?

What's made photography more accessible to everyone is the development of digital technology. It's now easy to capture, store, copy and share pictures, particularly through social networking sites like Facebook and Flickr. Do you take photos on a camera or do you use your phone?

I have to admit, with old fashioned photography I had a limited number of exposures on my film so would be more selective on what I would photograph. In a digital world I can now just keep snapping and choose my favourite shot later. I still like to print out my photos and keep them in an album so I can carry them around and bore my friends with them! I hope you like the ones I have shared with you here.

Reflective view of Uluru

Looking back - a view of Uluru, Australia in a car wing mirror


A seascape at Muckle Flugga, Shetland Islands, UK

So do you have a treasured photo? What is it of and why is it so special?

I hope you enjoyed this blog. For tips from the BBC on taking better photographs click on this link.

Explanation of some of the useful phrases from this blog:
A picture tells a thousand words - one photo can tell a story.
Taking a snap - taking a quick and casual photograph with your camera.
Point and press camera - a simple, sometimes cheap, unsophisticated camera.
The camera never lies - the camera takes an accurate image of what you see.


  • Comment number 1.

    Hello Rob! How are you? I am a great lover of pictures and off course I have to agree with every single word of you about the popularization of photography. The digital ones have helped people like me to take thousand pictures to get maybe one or two good ones, but the results are fantastic, don´t you think? I love using social network but I still think that using them could be a litle bit risky because our lives get exposed too much there. Flickr is really what I like too much more than anything esle on internet. Well I understand the rules of the BBC site so I can not use the link but if you want too see my profile there look for Alessandro Bomfim on flickr. I hope see more pictures of you! Bye!

  • Comment number 2.

    hi dude,
    photographing is one of my favourite hobbies,first thing i set it ready when i travel is the camera,i set one day for the photographing.
    i believe that the picture tells a million of words,agree it can be spoken by all the all languages and it can make you rich like the 2 young guys who recorded the concord smashed in england i think in 2000 (lucky guys).
    i have some pictures id like to share it with all of you but i dont know where i post it .
    finally thank you Rob for the interesting blog and the amazing pictures .

  • Comment number 3.

    Hi Rob,

    The first picture made me laugh. ha ha...

    But others impressed me. Thank you very much.

  • Comment number 4.

    Hi Rob , It 's Pary from Iran . It was a great pleasure to read your recent Blog and two old ones as well . I hadn't seen the second Blog mysteriously ! I liked all of them . You are so lucky to live in such a picturesque place . Living in such a place would be my dream . I liked your snowy Blog , too .I think As you don't have too much snow you don't lose the chance of having fun in snow . To tell the trust as we do usually have lots of snow in Iran specially in my province ( Ardebil in north west of Iran ) we almost have forgotten enjoying of snow …. What a pitty : ( This year was an exception for my country , too and we hadn't had any snowfall until last month and finally thanks God the sky opened and we had a few snowfall from then : )
    Speaking of photography , I love it and it 's one of my hobbies . As you said now we are lucky to have our digital camera ( point & press cameras ! ) so more people could enjoy photography . About treasured shots I think most photos will be treasured as time will pass , don't you think so ? Specially family shots ,babies shots , friends shots , school and uni shots and so on and I think the most treasured will be every ones wedding day shot .By the way your shots sounds brilliant but unlucky I couldn’t see some of them maybe the Net slow speed is to blame . I like your Blog so much and I hope to read more Entries from your side !
    One more thing could you please tell me what 'is a cricket green?
    Pary from Iran

  • Comment number 5.

    I Rob,
    I like your blog, nice pictures.I agree when you saided that photography is global. When I take a photo I exppress my feelings and emotions and I can said whatever throug a picture. I enjoy take a picture of a view or a landscape too. I think that photography capture the moment that you are living. its magic. Bye.

  • Comment number 6.

    Hello, Rob!

    You sound pretty romantic saying "a picture tells a thousand words". But I think we've become too lazy and often flick out for pictures instead of reading the whole text (not your text of cause:) Though I'm a monkey with my camera I do love good photos and always appreciate intelligence of the photographer. Thanks God we still have talented people.

    Thank you for pics, I’ve stolen the one from Shetland Islands
    Have a nice snap,

  • Comment number 7.

    Hi Rob! Good topic! Surprisingly, in the world era of photography there were not much blogs on the subject, except the one from Jim Pettiward from 17 june 2009. Coincidentaly, some amateur photographers from another regions have got their exhibition here in my town which I visited this week. It was a lucky decidion to look there and I must to visit there again. I was fascinated, some of the pieces were almost creative like paintings. However, this do not work vice versa. Take, for example your ´Storm aproaching´ photo. The paragraph you´ve written bellow is absolutely true. Any place the observer come from she/he understand what the photo shows. Though,if it would be a painting it could be a problem to pick up the meaning,I bet. I do not take photographs myself. That´s the art which need lots knovleadge about equipment and so on. However, it is some FLOG page which I have discovered recently which is why I became almost untrue to the BBC and learning english. Looking at the photos there took almost all my attention. So I could say I became obsessed, is that right? Now, I just wish lots of enjoyment with your camera and have a good light! marianna

  • Comment number 8.

    Thank you for all your comments. I like the expression from Daria about being a monkey on the camera! Do you mean you play around with the camera? My advice to people who are new to photography is don't be intimidated by the camera - you are the artist! When taking a photo take the view from a different angle and look for good colours.
    Abdallah - we would love to see your photos too. You can email us at learningenglish@bbc.co.uk - or share it on our Facebook page.

  • Comment number 9.

    Pary - to answer your question. A cricket green, is a flat field of green grass where a game of cricket is played. It's green because of the grass!

  • Comment number 10.

    thanks Rob i will send the pics to the email address you typed, and hope all like it,and wish hear your opinion about it .
    best wishes
    Abdallah from Kuwait

  • Comment number 11.

    Hi Rob! Great to hear from you again!! I do not really like being photographed cause I cannot stand posing, but I enjoy taking some snaps when I go on holiday especially since I got a digital camera. I basically take pictures of landscapes or buildings. Yes, I do have some special pictures. Whenever I see them they bring back some good memories of a special holiday or an important event such as my graduation ceremony or a family gathering. Have a nice week ahead and cheers!!!

  • Comment number 12.

    Hello Rob! My name is Adielson and I am Brazilian and I would like give you congratulations by your job. I think that is very important to do a job as this that you make showing the wonders of the world to the people. Sometimes the people forget that the world is wonderful and they don’t care of it like should. Your job serve to show that if we continue polluting the world as we making now in the future next we won’t see photographs like these again.

  • Comment number 13.

    haha... I ment I take such bad photos as only monkey with a camera can, but i like you variant more!

  • Comment number 14.

    hi, Rob
    thank you for your sharing, i like all of your pictures, my favorite picture is the last one.
    because i love sea very much, and i'd like to living there, and i like the green grasses beside the sea.

  • Comment number 15.

    I'm writting from a little country Belarus. I liked reading your article very much. As for me I can't live without my photo camera especially when I travel. Pictures help me to share my feelings, moods with my friends and relatives during my trips. And they can pretend that they were with me for all journey and saw all fascinating picturesque sightseeings that I enjoyed. I suppose my most favourite photos are ones with my dear friends especially from my university)


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