It’s the combination of lines and textures I like about my choice of image at the head of today’s post about my walk at Pagham on the south coast of England. The photo has been cropped a bit to help provide a better sense of the scene and it is the undulations of the boardwalk as it spans the shingle of the foreshore that initially attracted my eye. Continue reading→
Nearing the end of my short street walk this week I was considering how useful a camera can be in helping to pick out aspects of an environment. Without peripheral vision plus the ability to select a point of focus it is possible to present reality as abstract. I have not taken todays photos that far and the subjects of all these images are identifiable, but seeing it as it is does not necessarily mean there is an understandable context.
If you have seen my previous posts this week you will know that the context is a city centre street along which I have been walking, looking and listening to my surroundings. But taking the images of today’s post on their own, there is a great deal of contextual information they do not give. This means the photos almost force you to consider their more abstract elements and forget about the street or town they may be in – peeling paint, the pattern of broken glass, marks on a road surface and lines in a wall.
The penultimate photo below is in a specify location in a specific town / city. It can only be one particular place but at the same time it could be anywhere. I like the vertical columns in the background set behind the horizontal pattern of parked cars but wanted to bring some more attention to them give the image a little more individuality. So with a monochrome conversion, a little digital manipulation and a tighter crop . . .
If viewing this in an email, please click the post title to see other photos in this post, thank you.
The marsh water beside the lake at Llyn Llech Owain in Carmarthenshire, Wales, was almost like glass when this shot was taken. The reflection of grass and clouds in its surface is only distorted by the slightest of movements on a cold Winter day.
Do you have a preference for the landscape or portrait crop?
Which structure to focus on? That was the question for me with this view over the lake at Llyn Llech Owain in Carmarthenshire. The portrait view could only include one tower. My choice was less about the scale of the architecture and more about the fact that the larger structure was partly hidden by the small trees in the middle distance. With the lake being partly hidden by the trees, there seems to me to be a greater sense of mystery about the scene.
This view can be seen at the start of the StillWalks video “Winter Lakeside Walk” which features Llyn Llech Owain in South West Wales. The widescreen video necessitates the landscape crop but to avoid the need to click and zoom on an image in this WordPress theme, the crop is better rotated to the portrait format.
I find cropping images a fascinating challenge and whilst this is first done when framing the shot on the camera, the requirements of different purposes and platforms such as square for Instagram as well as those below forces me to look at the photos with a new “focus” on their impact. It is not ideal to do heavy cropping of any image but where the output is for screen rather than print, this is not such a big issue.
The images I am posting this week are all from the “Winter Lakeside Walk” production shoot and each day will offer a landscape and portrait crop of the selected image. Which do you prefer?
I tried different crops on both these photos in the Carmarthenshire countryside. In each case I thought the crop closest to the original photo was best but if you look on Instagram you will be able to see a different crop to this first shot. My preference is for this view because I find the composition of the diagonal and horizontal lines of the hedgerows in the background give an attractive cap to the flow and direction of the fence and its perspective. A square crop would make much less difference to the second shot where it is the textures and patterns I find of greatest interest.
Complementary images to my walks this week can be found directly on Instagram or via the sidebar images on the StillWalks blog. Images displayed here and on Instagram are a mixture of iPhone and Canon DSLR photography.