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Archive 2013 · Wide-Angle Composition
  
 
FarmerJohn
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · Wide-Angle Composition


I know the lighting from high noon isn't that great, but any suggestions on wide-angle composition? I've been struggling with the wide angle making some objects look really small, but I think these are doing a lot better than some of my un-posted photos. I have these three samples from the past weekend at Rocky Mountain National Park.

Canon 5D and 16-35.

(I know, I missed some dust removal too! )

#1 - rock formation at edge of Gem Lake


#2 - Gem Lake with mountain background


#3 - Tree on Deer Mountain Trail



May 20, 2013 at 08:54 PM
Camperjim
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · Wide-Angle Composition


None of these look like they were shot really wide.

I am not sure what you have been struggling with and are trying to accomplish. If you shoot very wide then the field of view will be very wide and distant objects will be small. I am not sure what you are trying to correct. Can you give us some more details?



May 21, 2013 at 01:43 AM
Jglaser757
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · Wide-Angle Composition


my suggestion for the first is that the rock formation on the left feels too "heavy"..i like the line leading out but maybe next time get your feet wet and try a little close in the water or the boulder in the water might benenfit from being wet too..get some teva's and walk carefully!!


In the second one, there is no "real" foreground interest for me,,its just a bunch of brown stuff and again,,tooo much on the left side..


In the last one,,you have a horizontal line, the side of the mountain that doesnt lead my eye anywhere and the landscape behind it it so wonderful it feels cut off..also, the second little tree doesnt add anything and the upper right corner does not add to the composition. Even though the lighting is flat, it is good enough to shoot in and something can be brought out in photoshop



May 21, 2013 at 09:41 AM
FarmerJohn
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · Wide-Angle Composition


Thanks guys.

I guess what I'm trying to figure out is how to get an interesting subject in the photo when the wide-angle makes things look much smaller.

For #1, I'm trying to get the leading line and rock formation at the edge of the lake as the subject. I see what you mean that the big mass of rock formation in the background on the left is distracting. I'll try cropping it out to see what happens.

For #2, I was trying to capture the expanse of the whole scene. The foreground is intended to be the lake, and the background is the mountains. I kept the left side of the photo in to show the peak of the rock formation, but it would probably be better if it showed the ridge leading up to the peak.

For #3, I was trying to make the subject the tree on the left with the mountains in the distant background. I think I can do something with this and cropping out the right hand side of the photo.




May 21, 2013 at 03:31 PM
 

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Camperjim
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · Wide-Angle Composition


I think I understand some of what you are looking to achieve.

Selecting the focal length can be important. A very wide angle allows you to get very close to a foreground object and to greatly emphasize it. Of course that also means that the background objects diminish in size and details are lost.

Regarding your compositions:

For the first image, all I see is the face in the foreground (eye, nose and tuft of hair). That is partly because of the lighting. In addition to the shape, the foreground rocks are very bright and draw the viewer's attention. There are some leading lines and shapes, but not enough to be of much interest.

I think the second image is the best of the three. I like the hourglass pattern and the leading lines that point our attention to the distant mountains. It is nicely done but shot mid day it is more of a snapshot. Because the discussion started with focal length, I should mention that the image could be greatly altered by changing the point of view and focal length. For a true wide angle interpretation, the photographer could be low and close to the lake and then use a very wide angle lens. That would increase the relative size of the lake and give us a very different perspective on the scene. I have no idea if there is a better or more interesting image using that technique but it would certainly be much different.

The last image just does not seem to work. The slanted ground and trees don't seem appealing. There is too much boring foreground and with the slant there is not a good way to remove it. The tree does not seem interesting and there does not seem to be any center of interest or appeal to the composition. I don't see a way to alter the focal length and perspective to make something out of this scene. I would walk down the trail and over the hill looking for something more interesting.



May 21, 2013 at 03:59 PM
FarmerJohn
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · Wide-Angle Composition


Okay, did a few edits, and I think I like these results more.
Jim and jglaser, thanks for the suggestions. I'll try some angles next time, but I think your suggestions helped out with the cropping. I guess we'll have to agree to disagree on the tree though. I think it's a pretty cool looking tree

#1 cropped. I like this one more, but next time I'll try to get more to the left to have a better angled view of the rocks.


#2 cropped. I do have some shots from low near the lake, but trees at lake level interfere with the mountain view, so they did not turn out as well.


#3 cropped. I think the tree is a pretty good subject, because it's jutting out at that ridiculous angle to the rest of the ground, and I like that the bottom of the boughs of the tree matches the angle of the mountain background.


Also, #3 with a friend of mine looking out





May 22, 2013 at 06:59 AM
cgardner
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · Wide-Angle Composition


I like to use my UWA lens to put something interesting large in the foreground and use near/far size perspective to create context for the foreground to explain it, but small and less interesting so the viewer sees it and grasps the location holistically but doesn't wander off the focal point.


































I'll also use the foreground to frame the background:






















Interesting leading lines to a focal point also help









May 23, 2013 at 12:55 AM





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