Positioning the Horizon


The day began with a clear blue sky, rather better than the forecast and perhaps not ideal for an exercise that would involve an increasing amount of sky. As is evident the weather was changing as the shoot went on, with pleasing results!

Horizon 1

Horizon 1: I think this works reasonably well. Placing the horizon high in the image allowed me to draw in some foreground interest, both in the stony foreshore and in the reflections of the sky in the nearer water. There’s little visible in any detail on the far shore, but the line of the deeper reflection on the right hand side does take the eye in that direction.

Horizon 2

Horizon 2: This works slightly less well – there’s more sky and the beginnings of some interest there; the reflections in the water give some foreground, but the visible foreshore is now so minimal as to be almost an intrusion or distraction rather than a real element in the image. So we’re making less of the foreground and only a little more of the background.

Horizon 3

Horizon 3: The horizon now, especially to the left is pretty much on the centre line. It’s OK, but maybe too well balanced to be particularly attention grabbing.

Horizon 4

Horizon 4: An improvement on 3 straight away, with a relatively small change in position. The sky is beginning to look interesting, revealing that which was hinted at in the reflections in the earlier pictures. The real problem here is that the area of water left is now largely uninteresting, and yet still occupies a fair percentage of the image; so as with 3 we’re a bit betwixt and between.

Horizon 5

Horizon 5: I find this better; it’s now clear that this is a photograph of the sky, which is introduced by the water and the horizon, with the darker reflection still operating as a leading line.

Horizon 6

Horizon 6: There’s a real sense of the sky dominating this image now, with the ground beneath it doing little other than waiting for the action to begin. This parallels 1 in that it is clear “what it’s about”. 1 is relatively tranquil, the image anchored by the foreground; 6 is more dynamic with the horizon / skyline doing the anchoring for a fiesty sky.

My conclusion from these 6 is that the ends of the spectrum are more interesting than the middle; better to be one thing or the other rather than to seek out comfortable middle ground.

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