Friday, 23 April 2010

Minute Differences

What a difference orientation can make to a shot. I learned this totally by accident while idly snapping in my mum's garden the other day.

I'd say up until that point, some 99.9% of my nature shots had all been shot in Landscape orientation. It was just the way the camera naturally went to my face. The results were all fine, nice, good even, but I was getting totally bored with nature shots. In fact, I started writing up a post just the other day on how uninspired I was feeling.

Red Leaves

These shots are all fine. Good, even (by my own meagre standards); certainly I would happily show all of them as part of my portfolio. But I felt like it was all getting kinda samey.

Then by total accident I shot this at my mum's:


Ignore the processing I've done on this for a sec and just think about the composition. It's not a huge change; you have the subject in neat focus and the bokeh is nice and smooth, same as the others. But somehow I feel like the change from Landscape to Portrait has made the shot a little more interesting, a little more pleasing to the eye, a little more inclined to make you stop and look.

Of course I didn't realise this until I came to process the shots the next day; needless to say I got kind of excited and went straight to the park to test my theory.


Well whaddaya know! I love all four of these. Maybe other people looking might just think "feh, more flowers, they all look the same" but to me the difference, as minute as it may be, is enough to renew my love for photography and the myriad ways one can capture the world's beauty.

Incidentally, who know tulips were so darn photogenic?

Also I just want to throw in there that all of the shots on this page were taken with manual focus. I am extremely pleased with my progress in learning how to control every setting on the camera to get exactly the shot I want -- in close-ups, auto-focus just doesn't do it for me -- and the fact that my shots are continuing to get sharper is happy-making. In fact for most of the last set of shots I did, I didn't even have to run the Unsharp Mask in post-processing. Hooray!


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