Assignment

Catch the Light

This assignment ran from Jun 5 to Jun 26, 2013.

“Without light, both we and our cameras are blind.” —Annie Griffiths

Light is the fundamental element of photography that transforms a scene from mundane to magical, from flat to multidimensional. Whether it’s the glow of the golden hour, the harsh contrast of the midday sun, or the distant light of stars coaxed out through long exposure, light is key. More...

Curated by:

Alexa Keefe
Photography Producer
Assignment Status
  • Open

  • Closed

  • Published

Published Jul 8, 2013.
Thank you for your contributions!

You Know It When You See It

Posted jun 19, 2013

"Nice light" is one of those catchphrases that means little in the
written language, but becomes crystal clear when expressed visually.
This is the principle I invite you to follow for the remainder of this
assignment. As you look at the frame you have made, ask these
questions: Is the light you have captured what makes your photograph
sing? Is it the element that binds together moment, composition, and technique? Does it make you want to say "nice light"?

I have said yes to these questions several times so far. Keep up the great work!

Off to a Shining Start

Posted jun 12, 2013
I’m enjoying seeing all of the ways light inspires you. Remember to show me the situations as they appear. This is infinitely more interesting than anything Photoshop can do. And please submit photos without watermarks if you can. These are less distracting to the eye and easier to integrate into the final story.

Finally, for those of you who have questions about how to create the shot you’re envisioning, take a look at these tips:


I’m looking forward to seeing what comes in this week!

The Language of Light

Posted jun 5, 2013

For this assignment, we invite you to speak the language of light. Spend time in one place and take note of how the changing light affects the mood and tone of what you're seeing. Observe the way light might fall on someone's face, cast a shadow across a surface, or play with color in a scene. Experiment with light sources in interior spaces, or get creative with light painting. 

Show us the light your camera sees.

Alexa Keefe

Alexa Keefe

Photography Producer
Alexa Keefe has been working with photography for over ten years as a photo librarian, photo editor, and photo producer. She is the Photography Producer for nationalgeographic.com and the editor of Photo of the Day.
383 comments
Abtin Javid
Abtin Javid

hi everyone, how I can put my photo in" Catch the Light " collection ???

Gary Conn
Gary Conn

In the story 'Catch the Light', some of the photographs depict light as the subject in the image.  Using light as the photo subject is an original idea and may require some creative practice.  Text accompanying the story was well written; it provided a supportive and coherent framework for the photographs.  Gary

Ellena Pfeffer
Ellena Pfeffer

Alexa Keefe, You have a hard choice to make! GREAT JOB EVERYONE!

varad vanjape
varad vanjape

Best of luck to all my fellow photographers & hope to have  a best , bright  & prosperous journey  to you.This assignment was just so much fun .Awesome pics everyone.

Ellena Pfeffer
Ellena Pfeffer

Beautiful, congrats to all Editors Choice! outstanding photos everyone! Best of luck on the journey forwards. This Assignment is going to be a great Story! I just know it. Don't you?

gisele teixeira
gisele teixeira

Hi Everyone,

What are the rules on 'collages or borders?' allowed? not? if so, under what circumstances? I was assuming not, but I got confused...thank you!

Nicholas B.
Nicholas B.

Greetings! Was wondering if anyone was having problems uploading images tonight/today? I tried to upload an image, and the site keeps telling me that I reached my limit of 15 for the week (Sunday to Sunday). Going by Eastern Standard Time, the next new Sunday started over a half hour ago...... Didn't it???:)

Abdulrahman Alhinai
Abdulrahman Alhinai

This website stole ALL my time and commitment to other social platforms. I must admit it is SO addictive. I think I need some rehabilitation.  

carol worrell
carol worrell

What I enjoy the most about this new website is the opportunity to connect with people all over the world. It has been so amazing to share similar interests and to view their world through photography. What a wonderful opportunity to bond, learn and grow.

Patti Lee Turon
Patti Lee Turon

Everyone have a great weekend. Get out and take some photos. I'll be looking forward to seeing the great photography everyone does.  Thanks for sharing and making my day brighter and fun.

Ellena Pfeffer
Ellena Pfeffer

Great job everyone for there lovely submissions it is very cool to see what others see in the world!

Jim Arnold
Jim Arnold

I stumbled across this and am quite glad I did.

My parents were always taking pictures of practically everything and after the military, I began doing the same.

I thank you for the opportunity all my friends and lots of family, said I should take and that is stepping into the world of photography.

One curiosity of this assignment remains...how do I know if my photos have been accepted, or not, aside from scrolling through each entry, looking for my own ?

Again, thank you for putting me one step closer, to what at one time was simply a foolish pipe-dream.

Leanne R.
Leanne R.

Thanks kindly for creating this assignment. I enjoyed participating, and it gave me a wonderful opportunity to see some fantastic photos. There is definitely a lot of talent out there.

Leonardo V.
Leonardo V.

Hard work... hard work! As my dad says 'the important is not the time but the job done with perfection'. Hang in there, staff folks and receive our positive vibes! ;))

Edgar Rowe
Edgar Rowe

I am confused.  Somewhere I read that  submissions  could NOT be photoshopped but editing by cropping/sharpness was Okay.  Many of the "editor's choice" photos have clearly been photoshopped.  What am I missing?  It is usually something!!!

Gary Conn
Gary Conn

The 2D is for 'Daily Dose' - Check YourShot 2D everyday for latest.  Gary

Ellena Pfeffer
Ellena Pfeffer

it's not recommend. But it's ok as long as you can see each image.

Ellena Pfeffer
Ellena Pfeffer

Keep on practicing, all that matters is if you love to take photos :)

gisele teixeira
gisele teixeira

@Arwyn Kazarine haha! I feel like that too Arwyn (especially when I look at the DD everyday)...but I figured as I am posting pictures, taking them, trying to be thoughtful about them, and drooling over the amazing ones I see here, I am learning as well.

Leonardo V.
Leonardo V.

@Arwyn Kazarine, Patti, Karri and Nicholas are absolutely right! When you really want something, time is only time. Everything will be alright, it's just you insist a little. As the saying goes: "The fat bird lands on the weak branch and sings, because he knows he can fly.".

Nicholas B.
Nicholas B.

@Arwyn Kazarine Let your passion and inspiration move you. Everything else will take care of itself. Photography is a journey, and we're ALL on this path, just at different places along the way!:)

Karri N.
Karri N.

@Arwyn Kazarine  Your in the right place to post, learn and grow as photographer and are most certainly not out of your league. I've been part of YourShot for almost a couple of years now and through the friends I've met here, my photography skills have grown by leaps and bounds, as I'm sure yours will too. I've been to your gallery and its off to a wonderful start. Keep going out into the world, find your inspiration and come back to share with all of us!  :-)

Patti Lee Turon
Patti Lee Turon

@Arwyn Kazarine  No you are not out of your league here.  All are welcome.  Amateur or Professional.  Use this platform to learn the craft of photography.  I am a amateur and when someone likes one of my photos it simply means I did something right and If they comment I listen and learn.  I also check out their galleries to see what they do and learn some more. So DON'T give up!!! We're all in this together. Keep Sharing.

Suman Acharya
Suman Acharya

@Nicholas B. YES.. me too same problem (reached the limit) but it is Sunday and half of it already passed.

Karri N.
Karri N.

@Abdulrahman Alhinai  I understood your joke and yes, it's addictive getting involved with it. I do hope you are enjoying all of your time spent on the site!  :-)

Patti Lee Turon
Patti Lee Turon

@Abdulrahman Alhinai  This is a website that lets you not only interact with people socially but you learn a great deal about photography also.  You learn about other countries and the people from those countries.  You even learn about people and places in your own country when sometimes you thought you knew everything.  Learning and growing with a community like we have here at Nat Geo. isn't addictive it's educational.  So I recommend do not get any rehabilitation. Thanks for Sharing.

Leonardo V.
Leonardo V.

Hi @Jim Arnold! Nice story! Ok, go to the properties of the photo you've sent for the assignment. This is in the lower left corner of the your photo's page. The last property should look something like this "Assignments: Catch the Light". If this is there, your photo has been successfully accepted in the assignment! ;)

Ellena Pfeffer
Ellena Pfeffer

I know, the whole reason to national geographic is to capture the natural beauty of the nature we see around us.

Suman Acharya
Suman Acharya

@Edgar Rowe from yourShot photoguidelines > The great thing about rules is that many are meant to be broken—even in photography.

Pradeep Chitta
Pradeep Chitta

@Edgar RoweNational Geographic looks for photographs that are not digitally altered. They accept minor burning, dodging, color corrections, cropping (and to some level panoramic stitching, and HDR). These things fall under "adjustments and corrections to the photograph" but not digital alteration. 

Alteration includes but not limited to changing the scene in its entirety; adding or removing some material objects (removing color to create a black and white is still OK); digitally creating a photograph from several photographs shot at different times (Panorama and HDR do not fall in this category because they are "supposedly/ usually" shot in a single stretch). 

As far as I know.. all the photographs published in the magazine so strictly follow above criteria. Thats the beauty of National geographic. 

gisele teixeira
gisele teixeira

@Pradeep Chitta @g. teixeira thank you pradeep. That was helpful. I had not seen that section for quick tips yet. It makes sense to me. I don't plan on using borders or adding watermarks, but I sometimes I feel like I'm still not clear on what the parameters are after looking at some pictures throughout the website. I also appreciated your comment on the 'allowed alterations' on pictures the other day (further down here). It was really helpful as well. The pictures on my gallery are simple and not altered, but at first I didn't think I could even adjust little things such as contrast, color, etc.

gisele teixeira
gisele teixeira

What I am loving the most about having joined the community is how friendly and welcoming it has been, whether we're professionals or amateurs.

Nicholas B.
Nicholas B.

@Suman Acharya @Nicholas B. Hi Suman! I was able to upload my quota of images again this morning! Must have been a minor "glitch" in the time schedule or something. I'll take a look at your page to see your newest images!!!

Leonardo V.
Leonardo V.

@Patti Lee Turon @Abdulrahman Alhinai What makes this community so educational, friendly, productive or addictive is its seriousness. Many are here for fun, but no one is here to joke. I mean, what we - amateur or professional - do affects and contributes directly to a better world and this is serious. Just as narrates the last published story. I like that, because that is what gives credit to the community. As much as it may seem relaxed and unpretentious our participation here sometimes, we know we will never be wasting our time. ;)

Abdulrahman Alhinai
Abdulrahman Alhinai

I hope I wasn't misunderstood here . My comment was supposed to be very positive and addiction can be positive as well ; as in photography itself.

Leonardo V.
Leonardo V.

@Ivan Lesica @Leonardo V. @g. teixeira @Pradeep Chitta Pro Photographer? What is this? :) Well, the feeling is mutual, Ivan. Every time I read a comment like yours, my spine freezes! It's just like Chespirito once said: 'I have a mother, the problem is that we have not been introduced to each other yet!' Yeah! I work for NG :)), the problem is that they haven't told me that yet!! I have to tell you my photos are not among the best, but I confess I've been having so much fun here anyway. Keep being these nice photographers all you are, and the community will thrive more each day. That's the key! #LetsExplore!!

Ivan Lesica
Ivan Lesica

@Leonardo V. @g. teixeira @Pradeep Chitta You definitely work for NG Leonardo...,admit it !!!!  Pro photographer ? One does not comment like you without having great knowledge about the subject...Just admit it ....   :-)   . PS-love your comments...

Leonardo V.
Leonardo V.

@g. teixeira @Pradeep ChittaAlways think like this: The more unchanged the image, the better! Ok, some adjustments are allowed and can really help us in some cases. In my particular case, for example, I almost always edit the white balance and noise of my photos, because in the small camera these properties are not well controlled. But otherwise, I avoid what I can change things like contrast, sharpness (mostly), watermarks, borders and more. Always remember that. The photo is made at the time of the click and if you struggle at this time, you will not need anything else. In the end, the good sense and sensibility of the photographer always prevails on using any editing process. ;)

Leonardo V.
Leonardo V.

@Abdulrahman AlhinaiNo! You have not been misunderstood in any way, Abdulrahman!. :)  What we wrote was not directed to you! We're just philosophizing because we really like to do it here and my english is not very good so maybe I used the wrong words ... this usually happens to me too! No problem with that! At the end everybody understands each other. Let's go on and #LetsExplore!! ;)

Abdulrahman Alhinai
Abdulrahman Alhinai

Thanks both for your replies. And I apologise if I was misunderstood. I actually did not intend to make any joke and may be this misunderstanding is basically due to language and culture differences. I must admit that I am not as good writer, may be I better just stick to uploading images , I might be not as much of a mistake r. I love this website and I want to share with you a little secret and that is spending about 12 hours a day since I joined is considered a type of an addiction

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