Posts tagged “#imaginary line”

Combined use of photography concepts

October 14, 2011 10:00 am HKT No comments

20111014 Combined use of photography concepts - 1 20111014 Combined use of photography concepts - 2

It doesn’t matter whether you are shooting landscape or portrait photos (in terms of orientation), you can apply the Rules of Third and the concept of vanishing point, like I did in Photo 1. Draw those imaginary lines in this photo separating it into nine parts, and you can see that I placed the vanishing point at the upper two-thirds section of the photo, making the photo more interesting. Of course, shooting it with a 17-40mm lens made the perspective of this photo strong in itself. But you can always add interest by putting more thought into the composition.

Placement of human subjects

You have seen many photos without a human subject. Here is one that included a living subject. He is placed in the center of the photo. But that is not why he grabs your attention. You can see the vanishing point at the end of this pedestrian road. And this man is placed along the lines that led to the vanishing point. That makes him more prominent than anything else in the photo.

20111014 Combined use of photography concepts - 3

Sometimes we cannot see the vanishing point in a photo but the strong perspective is still there. Photo 3 is an example of that. It is the lines of this house that create the tension or perspective of the photo. But without the red mailbox the photo would be less eye-catching. You can tell why the red mailbox is so important, because anything placed at this point, the two-thirds section of a photo, would be as prominent. If the mailbox was replaced by a person/model, he/she would be the focus of attention. In that case, you could ask your model to look in different directions, and see how his/her line of sight affects the look and feel of the photo.

Equipment Setup

Photo 1 Photo 2 Photo 3
Camera Canon EOS 5D 1 1 1
Lens EF 17-40mm f4L IS USM 1 1 1

Tips on composition

October 7, 2011 10:00 am HKT No comments

20111007 Tips on composition - 1 20111007 Tips on composition - 2

Recently in this blog I have been putting more effort into providing tips for beginning photographers regarding the use of ambient and artificial light instead of posting more casual writing on shooting experiences. I received some positive comments so I began to consider reorganizing my thoughts and writing more organized presentations about basic photography skills.

To start with, let’s talk about composition.

Diagonal Rule

Let’s skip the theoretical part. The rule is to make your photo more interesting by showing your subjects as diagonal lines in your picture, simply because it’s more visually dynamic. Also, a portrait orientation instead of a landscape orientation looks more dynamic. On top of all this, make clever use of eye-catching colors or blown-out areas as added interest, like I did in Photo 1.

Imaginary line

Something similar to the visible diagonal lines in a picture, is the imaginary line that draws the viewer’s attention when looking at a photo. Photo 2 shows you the interior part of a Penang temple. This picture was taken with a 17-40 mm lens so you can see that the visual impact mainly comes from the intended distortion using a wide angle lens to capture something “up there.” Also, you can get a more interesting photo (Photo 3) if there is a human subject looking up at something off the frame. The imaginary line is formed as you follow the boy’s line of sight to the upper right part of the photo.

20111007 Tips on composition - 3

Against the “rules”

Needless to say, a wide angle lens is the basic and most convenient gear you need for creating visual impacts, especially when shooting buildings, like what I did in Photo 4. But you will find the pictures very dull if they are monochromatic in nature. So you’d better add colors to your picture by finding interesting and colorful mansions. As for Photo 5, I did not follow the “rules” by using the widest end of the 17-40 mm lens. Instead, I tried to make my photo more interesting by including the trees that block the mansions in the composition. To be fair, the mixture of light green, dark green, and the blue sky is the most important element that draws your attention.

20111007 Tips on composition - 4

20111007 Tips on composition - 5

Equipment Setup

Photo 1 Photo 2 Photo 3 Photo 4 Photo 5
Camera Canon EOS 5D 1 1 1 1 1
Lens EF 17-40mm f4L IS USM 1 1 1 1 1
LED lighting Triopo LED Light Panel 1