Tuesday, 29 September 2009

PROJECT 6 : hands on!

This project encourages us to look at the amount of space the subject takes up in the frame.  My subject is taken from Centenary Wood on the shores of Derwentwater. It sits under Catbells, so on this day my husband and eldest two climbed to the summit, and me and my youngest took a low-level walk. Then we met in these woods and walked back along the shore together.  This wooden 'hand' was errected to mark the new millennium.  It is difficult to get an idea of scale.  To give you an idea all three of my children can sit comfortably in the palms of the hands.  The first of the images here (image no. 1) is the shot I instinctively took of the subject.  The hands are central in the image and I have allowed some 'breathing' space around the outside.  The pebbles sort of 'frame' the subject nicely.

Image No. 1
Focal length:   14mm
Iso:                    400
Shutter speed: 1/400
Aperture value:  f2.8
11-16 mm wide angle lens used

In this second image (image no. 2), I have taken a similar shot but moved in a little closer and taken away any space around the edges. The unusual shape of the subject means there is some space both above and below. In this shot you are starting to get a feeling of the texture and what the depth of the hands, but you loose a sense of place.

Image No. 2
Focal length:    14mm
Iso:                     400
Shutter speed:  1/125
Aperture value:   f2.8
11-16mm wide angle lens used

For the third exercise I closed in so that none of the edges could be seen and focussed in on the thumbnail (image no.3). I like this image as it gives a new dimension to the subject.  The character and personality of the thumbnail tells so much about the subject. The cracks in the wood are now very clear and draw you in.  The elderly appearance of the thumbnail makes you reflect on the human ageing process too!

Image No. 3
Focal length:    14mm
Iso:                     400
Shutter speed:  1/400
Aperture Value:   f2.8
11-16mm wide angle lens was used

For the final image (image no. 4) I walked right away from the image so that the subject occupied a small part of the frame with the environment in which it sits being dominant. Because of the photogenic environment in which the hands sit such as the trees, winding path with walkers on, bright light reflecting on the lake, flickering light through the trees, there is a lot to look at in addition to the hands. But, the hands IMHO are 'lost' in the 'clutter' of everything else.  The hands loose the voice and other voices are being heard - not necessarily negative but useful to be aware of when framing an image 'how loud, the objects in the image are shouting'.

Image No. 4
Focal length:      14mm
Iso:                       400
Shutter speed: 1/2000
Aperture Value:    f2.8
11-16mm wide angle lens used

Out of the four images, the image that is shot to exactly fit the frame (image no. 2) and the other that places the subject in the landscape (image no. 4) are my least favourite and arguably the most challenging to get right. The detailed shot (image no. 3) takes away any issue of conflicting/competing subjects to focus on.  Quite the reverse with the image where you place the subject within the landscape (image no. 4). The image where the subject fits the frame exactly (image no. 2) brings with it issues of composition and what exactly the message of the image is. And image no. 1 by it's very nature is pleasing but definitely conventional.

I took image No. 1 and played with a number of crops to see if or how it can improve the picture. I am starting to crop 5x5 square format a little at the moment and find crop 3 pleasing.

Crop 1

Crop 2

Crop 3

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