You’re on the right track with this type of photographic work. What you’ve essentially done is limit the scope of your photograph by moving in closer to your subject. This technical change has accomplished a critical task; it’s helped you properly confine and refine your visual story. Just as writers need to remove superfluous words or paragraphs from their stories, photographers must do the same thing.
You must always be asking yourself “What is my visual story” and then you need to ask yourself if both your primary and secondary visual elements help you tell that story.
However, it’s incredibly important to note that story focus and story simplification doesn’t necessarily mean close up or macro photography. Although that is generally a photographer’s initial reaction to the simplification process, it’s not mandatory. In fact, many great photographers’ (Including Ansel) have worked (very successfully) and simplifying large geographic spaces. So rather than working up close,, they are working on much larger scenes that have unifying elements. It might be a limited color palette, limited shapes, consistent patterns and commonly; a limited number of objects.
As you progress through the course it will be fun to try to move from this image (a close up) to wider and wider images that use the same visual simplification elements.
For example look at how much space is simplified and organized in the following photographs: