About Me

My photo

I'm a Cairns, far north Queensland, Australia professional photographer specialising in travel, editorial and environmental portraiture.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Go to your corner

Here's another example of putting the subject in one of the corners of the frame. This is what is known in the biz as an environmental portrait.

It's called that because it shows the person who is the subject of your photograph in the environment in which they find themselves. Often it refers to local people at their place of work but it can also refer to travellers on holiday. All you need is something surrounding them to show where they are.

This image is of my wife Chiharu halfway up a little hill called Gokyo Ri high up in the Himalayas of Tibet. It's not very big - only 400m or so above the village below - but at over 5000 metres above sea level there's not a lot of oxygen up there and it's slow, hard work.

This is another example of remembering to look back over your shoulder at what's behind you because there just might be a photo in it. Of course I told my wife I was looking back to make sure she was alright - we'll just keep the real reason a secret between us shall we!

Anyway in framing this shot I obviously wanted to show where we were. So I needed to put Chiharu in one of the corners of the frame to fill the rest of it with supporting information. Firstly I wanted to have the village below in the frame because it showed where we had walked from. I also wanted to show those big towering mountains in the background as well. And of course the lake was a major consideration.

I deliberately chose a wide-angle lens to open up the perspective and placed the elements so as to give myself a foreground (Chiharu in that stunning yellow rain suit!), middle ground (the village of Gokyo) and background (the mountains beyond). That gives us our three dimensionality.

So there are a number of compositional elements here. We've got our rule of thirds, use of a wide-angle lens and the placing of the elements for a three dimensional effect. Now you know why it took us four hours to get to the top of the hill! I had a lot to think about. :)

No comments: