Vertical and horizontal frames

Considering the aim of this exercise I decided, part way through, to go about it in a slightly different way to that outlined in the manual.  It calls for the same scenes to be shot twice, once in the vertical format and then repeated in the horizontal format.  Given that the analysis calls for a comparison of the two formats it seemed to me that shooting each scene in the vertical and then in the horizontal was a more efficient way of conducting the exercise; I hope I have not missed a fundamental point as to why we are guided to shoot all in the vertical and then repeat the exercise for horizontal orientation!

As regards the choice of scene, I elected to use two locations.  The first was to shoot objects and the second landscape scenes.  I did this out of interest given the natural tendency to shoot landscape in the horizontal whereas one tends to think more about frame orientation for specific objects, well I do anyway.

I think this supports the proposition that you can make most scenes work in the vertical orientation and it is clear that, while you can make it work, it is just that, make it work.  This is well demonstrated by the shots around the SS Gt Britain where some of the objects fit well in the vertical and others sit better in the horizontal e.g the bicycle (DSC_5359 and DSC_5360).  I think there are also cases where either format works depending upon what effect you are looking for as in the luggage (DSC_5363 and DSC_5364) where the horizontal shot is all about the containers and the vertical brings in the notices pinned to the wall above.  In the landscapes there is perhaps more scope for making the verticals work as there are many objects with height but again it depends what the emphasis is, a true landscape or picking out specific objects.

So what do I take away from this exercise?  Well I think it is another element in the portfolio of things to consider when looking at a scene and composing it in your mind, before you even raise the camera to your eye.  The pre-flight check list is getting longer.  I can see a small laminated card coming on, at least until some of these things become second nature!

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