Get Closer-Get Lower-Get Higher

Most people I observe stand too far away from the subject they are photographing. I am sure that is because they do not want to call attention to themselves; they want to snap a fast picture and not be noticed or be in the way. But I say, “Get closer to your subject!”

Taking a moment to get closer and not have so much distracting background improves an image greatly.  Cropping in post production later is okay to a point, but I am for doing it right the first time in the camera.  Over cropping degrades the image quality by only using a small part of the file. 

Speaking of getting right in there, I was in Las Vegas and found a crowd of people watching and taking pictures of three living statues. These beautiful girls were clothed and painted in one color and looked like real statues only they moved just a little bit just once in a while. Similar to the English guard, they will not even move to accept a tip or compliment. I carefully worked myself into the center of the crowd and took a photograph…well, okay, lots of photographs.  After a few minutes I realized that the crowd had opened up for me, and I had all the elbow room I wanted. 

Try not shooting everything at your standing level. Add interest to your images by getting lower and shoot at kid level. I squat, kneel, and lay on my stomach (all of which is getting harder at 40 something!).  As shown in the example on the left, I often get on a ladder and shoot down on someone by two feet or more.  Lay someone on the ground and shoot almost straight down on them. That is fun, too!


This is part one of an eight part series from an article  called “Everyday Images Made Extraordinary” that I wrote for a division of Gordon Photography & Gallery dedicated to mentoring other professional photographers who wish to learn more about the business of photography.

Categories : Basic Photo Tips

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