Saturday, May 17, 2008

Point of View #2

JOHN B. WELLER: "Once I've composed a photograph, I look at all of the elements inside the frame and ask myself, 'What function should this element ideally play?' and, 'How is it functioning in the current light?' Sometimes moving the camera a couple of inches allows it to play a different role."

PHOTOGRAPHER'S DIARY: This photo was taken about ten minutes later than yesterday's TODAY'S. I'd like to think the slant is the same, but the point of view has been shifted. Yesterday's image told the story from the farmstead's staid point of view. The format is now horizontal, and the lens has zoomed out (from digital 52mm to digital 28mm, a bit of a wide-angle). Any slight shift of the camera left, right, up, or down realigns porch and yardscape, significantly rejiggers the composition.

I step back to put one column right and set my level so the column is vertical, a weak anchor for the image. From this anchor everything else seems to be in motion and expanding with the first leafing and flowering. I refine the composition putting the decorative bracket, with its finial and miniature column, tightly into the upper corner. This gives it moment. I've never seen one quite like it. What is its story? All I can say is it makes a gracious entry into a composition that spins. Would it bother anyone if I made it spin clockwise? What obligation does the photographer have to the actual?

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