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August 31, 2009 at 8:55 pm #17911RubiaParticipant
the beauty and the beastSeptember 2, 2009 at 7:54 pm #19347Duncan RawlinsonKeymaster
Great first assignment. This is what we were hoping you’d accomplish with this assignment. In your “beast” photograph we wanted you to take an “average” picture. An average picture is usually lazily composed and haphazard. Little attention is paid to things like composition, color palette, use of lines, light, weight and object placement. For this image you’ve simply raised your camera and taken a photograph of a plant on a table in front of a window.
However, it’s important to go through your ‘beast” photograph and identify what weakens the composition. Often it’s just a knee-jerk reaction when we don’t’ like an image. That being said, it’s important to deconstruct a bad composition because it will help you avoid making common mistakes in the future.
So let’s start by looking at your “beast” photograph. For starters it suffers from severe “amputation” (i.e. cutting off of secondary objects in the background). Notice how you’ve included only half of the potted plant on the right, only part of the flowers on the left and you’ve slightly snipped the toy on the left with the left wall of your photograph? These are all easily avoidable mistakes. It’s as important to know what to let into your composition as it is to know what to leave out. In this case you need to ask yourself “what is my story about” and then all of the elements that make it into the 4 walls of your photograph need to support that story. It’s just like a writer creating a sentence. You don’t’ want your story to run off or contain superfluous or worse non-relevant details.
Even though you have amputating in your “beauty” photograph, it looks more intentional and it helps your composition.
Another big difference between the two images is your use of a color palette. Your “beast” image used gradients of green, red, yellow, blue and white while your “beauty” photograph uses a more limited color palette of brown and green. By simplifying your color palette you are able to better control the composition and your audience’s attention.
Overall, great work on your first assignment. I look forward to seeing your next photograph!
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