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It’s a Matter of Inches …

A lot of people ask me why I take so many photos when I shoot.  They kind of assume that when you want a photograph you just take one image.  While this turns out some times, often it takes a great deal of observation and experimentation to discover the best photograph for a given situation.  It becomes a matter of inches moved and slight angle changes to make a beautiful image.  The first impulse when taking a photo of a subject is to take it from the point at which you first observe it and call it a day, but often we aren’t lucky enough to have started at the ideal spot.  It takes diligence and careful observation to figure out when the composition and lines work most effectively together. For example:

I was in Roanoke, VA recently and came across one of those wood fences like you see at ranches.  I thought it looked cool and decided to take a photo.  The first one I took was, as I said is often the impulse, from where I first decided to take a picture of the fence.  This is how it turned out:

It’s a pretty ‘Ehhh” photo like that.  The cars in the background take away from the overall composition and the post loses all context and is lost in the confusing image really.  So I moved 6 inches and changed the angle that I was shooting it from and came up with this image:

A far nicer image, the blurred background works well with the image and the focus is more directed at the interesting knotting of the post.  Changing the background from the pavement and cars to the rest of the fence and the green foliage simplifies it and allows the image to grow from the focus of the image (the post).

A matter of 6 inches and a few degrees change of angle and the image becomes completely different and (I dare say) much better.  So keep shooting and don’t stop until you’re sure you have the shot you want.


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