I’ve recently started to enjoy (and, when I go out to take photos, look for) shots that give the scale of a scene. We live in a time where impressively large buildings and objects are around us all the time. And yet we tend not to realize the size of our world.
Eric shows us scale with his photo. We have two people walking by a parking garage; something we see everyday. But look at how big the entrance and exist are; even the scale of the signs become apparent. Yes, we’re given another sign to explain, in exact terms, the size of the entrance, but contrasting it with the person actually shows the size; very different. The photo is also helped by the drab black, white, and gray look, with only hints of coloring in the umbrella, signs, and shrubbery. The composition is also spot on, with the straight lines of the openings framing both people, to capture the scene. Truly well done.
Crossing The Moon
courtesy of ep_jhu
There are many ways a photograph comes into existence, artistically speaking. A photographer can simply leave everything to chance; just got out the door one day, and find a photo in what is presented to him or her. Or a photographer could plan out a shot ahead of time. If one goes this route, it’s amazing what details a photographer can control, such as the placement of celestial objects. As humans have known since ancient times, the moon and sun follow a predictable course through the sky. While this information is normally used for assisting with farming and keeping time, it’s also possible to use it to create striking photos.
Take ep_jhu’s photo above. Knowing the time and placement of the setting full moon allowed him to catch Luna as it was setting against the city’s skyline. The photo gives a fascinating scale for both moon and buildings. In fact, the shot is very reminiscent of Ansel Adam’s famous Moonrise, Hernandez, New Mexico. It is a simple and stunning, well planned shot.
And if you’re interested in planning out a moon (or sun rise) shot, I can recommend the Photographer’s Ephemeris. It will give line of sight views on the tracking of both the moon and sun, along with all three times for settings. A well informed photographer could not ask for more!
Dupont Circle Streetcar Tunnel by ep_jhu
There are few things that get my mind racing like the secret history of Washington, DC. It can be hidden tunnels under Dupont Circle or miniature Washington Monuments buried by the real thing; I just love it. Flickr user ep_jhu stumbled across a part of DC which isn’t exactly secret, but is just not well remembered: the old trolley tunnels under Dupont Circle.You’ve no doubt seen the old streetcar entrances in your travels around the circle, and there has been talk of developing the area into commercial ventures. Though I don’t know how he found his way in, Ep_jhu found a historical DC landmark which isn’t often photographed. The colors natural to the scene, subtle as they are, speak to utilitarian construction. Rather than shooting the scene from eye level and having all walls converge at similar angles, he shot low, emphasizing the size of the tunnel while making it more dramatic. Check out his other photos from the tunnels. They’re all very well done.
Contribute all your great shots from around town to our flickr pool! You may just get featured on this blog.
‘US Capitol Dome’
courtesy of ‘ep_jhu’
Photography is such a versatile art form. Not only is there a wealth of subjects and topics to shoot, but the way the image is exposed, manipulated, or processed can give an otherwise plain image an amazing life. And then there is the color to play around with: do you choose realistic color or extra saturated? Or even black and white? The options for expression are endless.
Take ep_jhu’s shot of the Capitol Building. On a pure composition level, this shot has been taken a million times. But by changing the coloring to black and white, and maximizing the contrast, this is suddenly a shot worth taking the time to see. It is now eye catchingly stark and looks more like a computer generated rendering than a photograph.
To end this post on an interactive note: Anyone know what direction ep_jhu was standing, in relation to the Capitol, to get this shot?