Saturday, 20 August 2011

Dividing the Frame Ex 1 - Balance

Balance is important but not always obvious when framing or looking at images. It can be made up of elements such as colour, tones, shapes and placement of objects amongst other things. I have selected some existing images and will show where the balance lies in each.

The first image is fairly simple. The larger group of rowing boats are balanced by the blue door, which is closer to the centre of the frame.

The second image is slightly more complex. The horse and foal are divided by the vertical centre line but the foal is obviously smaller than it's mother. The rocks in background add another element above them. This image is not a very well balanced one in theory but there are other shapes involved (curves are made by the horses necks and body shape) which will be discussed in a later exercise.

This image is another example of the smaller element balancing because it is closer to the centre line.

The larger elements of this image probably couldn't be more symmetrical! The smaller elements within the window add interest but are still reasonably balanced despite their different shapes.

The larger static landscape elements of this image are well balanced by the movement of the Springer Spaniel which is again closer to the centre line.

This was an interesting exercise because the majority of these images naturally show balance, even if I wasn't deliberately framing them to show this at the time. I believe an element of the photographers 'eye' for a good image taps into our natural liking for a balanced image.

Dividing the frame Ex 2 - Positioning the horizon

The following pictures show a local field near my home. I have positioned the horizon in various places from low to high in the image.

This low horizon would be a very boring image if the sky were not interesting. However, there is just enough interest in the cloud formations to make the image work reasonably well.

The second image has just a small amount more land. I was actually aiming to get the horizon about a third up the frame but clearly missed!  This would have been the optimum shot due to the interesting clouds.

 The horizon is roughly at halfway in this image. This is normally to be avoided in landscapes as it makes for a static image. However, the slight incline of the hill and the clouds again rescue the image from complete failure I think.

This image has the horizon around the 3/4 mark. The lack of foreground interest makes this the least successful image in my opinion. The image below has approximately the same proportions but a lower perspective brings slightly more foreground interest and makes for a better image.