A place to think about composition in photography

Posts tagged “landscape

Red Poppies in Suffolk

I like poppies, the scarlet is a perfect contrast to a green landscape.  This caught my attention when out walking on holiday in Suffolk, UK.

I could have stepped a few metres to the right or left and captured many more poppies but you can have too much of a good thing.  Those of you with a composition mindset will notice the poppies are also placed almost on an intersecting third, but not quite. Again you can have too much of a good thing.

I wanted the contrast to work on a few levels, colour being just one, focus is another.  The intimacy of the poppies gradually makes you aware of the open space of the field behind.  Notice the horizon, it is right at the top of the image, a thin sliver of darkness against the diminishing blandness of the wheat field.  This implies the space behind the foreground is large but not infinite.

Look closer and you’ll notice upward slanting diagonals in the wheat field contrast with the slight downward slant of the horizon. In Northern and Western cultures our visual language interprets a left to right slope as up, optimistic, reassuring.  The bright colour against the wheat field is happy, positive, enthusiastic.

Red Poppies

Red Poppies in wheat field in Suffolk

I felt good taking this picture and still feel good looking at it now.

 


Tree Shadows

We were staying with some friends in London.  I like London a lot.  I first came here when I was ten, on a school trip and my love for this city has never left me.  I am always impressed by the quiet spaces  and secret places that London preserves to insulate us from the noise and rush of the city.

One sunny morning I spent some time in quiet contemplation on the balcony.  I was looking at the London skyline and watching the jets glide overhead, wondering where all those people were coming from and going to.  Then I looked down.

I didn’t have my ‘proper’ camera to hand, so out came my trusty iPhone again.  A quick dust of the lens and I had this picture.

tree shadows

tree shadows

Threes are often quoted as a pleasing number for composing pictures.  I do have an iconoclastic streak when it comes to rules, but in this case I’ll go along with that.  Especially when it helps to be playful with the language.

This works for me.  I hope it works for you too.


Curves

Colours and lines attract me.

This picture is a variant on the lead-in style of composition.

IMG_7362a7x3

Curves

I like the simplicity of the composition, the dynamic sweeps of the curves are a powerful effect.

You’ll know I’m quite aware of the horizon in my pictures.  In this one the eye searches out a line and the only one that matches our preconceptions is the roughly horizontal line right at the top of the image.  This adds to the powerful effect and holds the attention. Well, it works for me anyway, tell me what you think…


Three Dots in Manchester

I find producing these abstract pictures rather rewarding.

This is another one taken on my iPhone.  It is a straight shot again, very little done in photoshop except for minor cropping.

Three Dots - Manchester

Three Dots – Manchester

This is part of the one square km series as this was taken within a small area.

Working within constraints of technology, time and space is something I find fascinating.  I hope you do too.


Fountains of Light

This time the title refers to Fountains Abbey, a world heritage site in Yorkshire in the UK. The 12th century abbey ruins are lit by coloured lights for Christmas and the opportunity to take photographs is irresistible.

Here are some of the pictures that caught my eye, I hope you like them.

Stone vaulted chamber at Fountains Abbey lit by coloured lights

Stone vaulted chamber at Fountains Abbey

If you’ve not been, I can recommend this place.  It has a tranquil beauty that is enhanced at night.  Here is another view of the same place.  I’m deliberately using the rule of 3 in this picture.

Vaulted columns at Fountains Abbey

Vaulted columns at Fountains Abbey

Let me know what you think, I’d be fascinated by your comments.


Kickabout

As you’ll have gathered by now I’m interested in how far I can push a picture and still have you recognise the human form.

Here is my latest offering:

Kickabout

Kickabout

Another way of looking at this was expressed by a friend “Why on earth did you buy a camera that can capture tens of millions of pixels only to take blurry snaps like a box brownie?!”

You’ll have probably guessed that to take shots like this you need a lot of control over the camera, to override its programming to take the sharpest pictures….. just like everyone else.

I like making the effort to be a little different.


Walking on Water

Another watery theme.

The way the image is broken up into myriad pieces makes the eye work harder to decypher the picture.

Walking on Water

Walking on Water

As mentioned in previous posts our perception filters are tuned to recognise the human form.  here the brian has to work very hard to make sense of this image, however I’ll bet that most people will recognise the shape of a man in blue jeans.