Exercise: Images with Depth
Objective: I found the objective for this exercise a little confusing but I think I need to produce three images illustrating three of four atmospheres. Here is my first:
These armoured personnel carriers drive up and down the main road near my house constantly. I have always thought it would be exciting to drive one myself. I made a couple of images to try and sum up something of how it may feel to hurtle down the road in a tracked vehicle.
This was the first image I made using my DSLR. I kept to a slow shutter speed 1/25s to blur the action and give the impression of movement. That’s the stills photographer in me. The depth of field is not really relevant. (1/25s @ f32). There are a lot of diagonals here which add to the dynamism.
The equivalent moving image would hopefully keep the tank in focus as the pan blurs the background. Even though I panned this on a monopod it’s not as sharp as I expected but it still works. The sound is also very loud.
This one was easier to photograph as it was on the other side of the road. This would be the frame for the start of a shot. I chose a point a which the sun was lighting the front of the vehicle, I have included a lot of diagonals and the lens was set at 105mm so this is a medium telephoto shot. Thinking about the moving image, I would probably use a shorter focal length and not alter the zoom as I panned right. the exposure setting is 1/500s @ f6.8. I think this could be a good exercise in panning – I’ll give it a try on the next driver training day that coincides with my morning off. I think this works well. As moving images, these compositions will have depth.
This is a picture of the scenery store backstage at the local theatre. It was made during the late evening with daylight coming from a high window above the stairway. I had it in mind that the sunlight would give layers of light which would emphasise the dull and oppressive foreground.
It is a small, narrow space with muted colours and dark shadows. I thought It would also work in monochrome but without the colours, the image is a bit flat. I am happy with the image, the placing of the objects in the foreground and background add to the depth created by the various colours and patches of light.
For the third image I visited the National Trust at Hinton Ampner where I was able to photograph a refined atmosphere. I have included two images, the first of which uses diagonal lines, foreground and background objects and light to differentiate different depths. I am happy that I have achieved what I set to do here.
My second image uses differential focus and light and shade to indicate depth. This dining room was lit only by window light from the left and lamps around the room. I chose to focus on the decanter and the narrow band including the first place setting on the left,.
- Probably the most successful way of creating depth in an image is using diagonals. If they converge, so much the better. Other ways, demonstrated above include the use of foreground and background objects, differential focus and layers of light and dark including the use of colours.
- Visual depth is very important to the overall feel of the shot, it can help to create atmosphere and mood, it can help tell you create and understand a character’s mood or mental state.