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Friday, May 07, 2004

Look for a Strong Diagonal ...
Boat Bottom Abstract
Just one more of my Useful Clichés, please, and I promise I'll get off this kick ...

"Look for a strong diagonal" is definitely one compositional theme that I find in a lot of my photos. In fact, sometimes, if there isn't a strong diagonal, I'll twist the camera to invent one - don't laugh - sometimes it works!

Take the case of this picture, Boat Bottom Abstract. I think there are two things that make this image successful: the intense color and the strong diagonals.

What you're really looking at here is a badly-maintained powerboat sitting ashore on storage stands. I approached the boat from a little below its bow. The lines are actually the strakes, or "steps", formed into the sides of the hull.

My first shot was pretty much level and not too exciting. But then I tilted the camera to get the lines flowing from one uppper viewfinder corner to the opposite lower corner. Bingo!... the Strong Diagonal Useful Cliché brain cell fired, I tripped the shutter, and got a much more interesting image. Back home and with the file in Photoshop, I jacked up the saturation to intensify the color and get the "blooming" effect on the rust and scrapes.

From Cyberspace, here is a great example of a "Strong Diagonals" photo by Hin Chua, whose new photoblog is Ancient Imagry of the Future.

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