Exercise 1.4 Frame

Brief :

Take a good number of shots, composing each shot within a single section of the viewfinder grid.

Don’t bother about the rest of the frame! Use any combination of
grid section, subject and viewpoint you choose.
When you review the shots, evaluate the whole frame, not just the part you’ve composed.

Process :

For this exercise I again used a Nikon D5200 with the 18-55mm kit lens.

I also tried to keep the ISO as low as I could to retain quality in the images.

I processed in adobe’s Light room  CC using a little luminance and in some cases of severe image distortion I used their perspective correction which leaves a lot to be desired but is better than the original.

Pictures :

All of these Photographs were taken of W.W 2 bomb damage of the Victoria and Albert museum, London and Brompton  Cemetery; Chelsea.

Here the Girl in the lower left lends a sense of proportion to the damage.

Just glad I wasn’t around during the blitz.

Another view of the entrance.

The whole length of this building is marked by shrapnel.

Window surrounds.

side of the museum.

Top of another window.

Judging by the inscription this fellow must have made quit an impression on his peers.

This headstone lies directly across from the previous one.


Analysis :

With this subject matter the placement of the holes gouged by a W.W 2  bombing raids shrapnel didn’t seem overly critical within the frame.

Some did work better than others, such as those with people in them to lend a sense of scale and the side view showing the how much of the building was affected.

On a technical note you really need a tilt and shift lens for this subject to look right,   perspective correction still leaves the image looking distorted but is better than the original.


Reflections :

This exercise felt and to some degree does still feel contradictory to me.

Why would you compose in a fraction of your view finder only to assess

the whole image.

It seems to me like the reverse of cropping an image, you’re adding unwanted or unexpected elements.

When I saw these marks in the building I thought it dove tailed nicely by combining the previous exercises of point and lines.

As you can see below in the proof sheet, these images do work on an individual basis and as a set.




Exercise 1.3 (2) Line

Brief :

Take a number of shots using lines to flatten the pictorial space.

To avoid the effects of perspective, the sensor/film plane should be parallel to the subject and you may like to try a high viewpoint (i.e. looking down).

Modern architecture offers strong lines and dynamic diagonals, and zooming in can help to create simpler, more abstract compositions.
Review your shots from both parts of Exercise 1.3. How do the different lines relate to the frame?

There’s an important difference from the point exercises: a line can
leave the frame.

For perpendicular lines this doesn’t seem to disrupt the composition
too much, but for perspective lines the eye travels quickly along the diagonal and straight out of the picture. It feels uncomfortable because the eye seems to have no way back into the picture except the point that it started from.

So for photographs containing strong perspective lines or ‘leading lines’, it’s important that they lead somewhere within the frame.

Process :

Unlike the previous exercise I tried to flatten the pictoral space using perpendicular lines.

Again using my trusty 18 – 55 mm zoom and D5200.

Photographs :

The lines of the tarp stop your view going any further than this very patient BBC camera man who explained and showed me how awesome his gear was.

Taken near the Albert memorial……… Peter Pan!!!!

What I like to call the Liquorice all sort building in Hammersmith.

Another view of this crazy building.

No, it’s not the lens; this building looks like this to the naked eye.

Close up of an electronic billboard.

Another flattening perspective.


Research and Analysis :

Not much research to do for this as the effects are obvious to most people even if they don’t conciously think about it.

The leading lines of  exercise 1.3(1) work very well at telling a story, rather like a novel; you have a beginning, middle and end.

The beginning is the bottom of the frame and the end is the top, I feel there must always be a point of interest on or at the end of the leading line otherwise it leaves the viewer unsatisfied.

It’s even worse with diagonal lines as they get you to leave the frame before the end, rather like those movies that leave you to make up what happens as the curtain drops; totally unsatisfying.

The photo’s with perpendicular lines work well for abstract subjects and for placing something interesting that doesn’t necessarily  have to lead you anywhere, they just are.

A good example of this is the shadow of a walking girl that reminded me of a scene from Peter Pan.

The building I liken to a liquorice all sort is very interesting, all the lines converge in some way as the building is built with the wings at varying widths and heights, it’s also one that people walk past without really noticing; but when someone points it out there’s a type of epiphany that occurs.

Reflections :

I enjoyed these two exercises both the places and some of the people I met.

The BBC camera man was awesome, despite setting up for coverage of the boat race he was very patient and showed me how his gear worked; I want that image stabilisation he has, any one want a kidney; only £40,000.


Exercise 1.3(1) Line

Brief :

Take a number of shots using lines to create a sense of depth.

Shooting with a wideangle lens (zooming out) strengthens a diagonal line by giving it more length within the frame.

The effect is dramatically accentuated if you choose a viewpoint close to
the line.

Process :

For this exercise I went to such diverse places as bike stands, parks and stately homes.

Again I used my trusty 18 – 55 mm zoom and shot mainly hand held in Programme mode rather than full automatic mode as auto mode is more hit and miss as to where it focuses.

Pictures :

The classic use of a leading line used to draw your eye to the couple at the end of the path.

A most wonderful hot house.

Architects and landscapers are great studies in line and form as in this staircase on a stately home.

Shot close to the wall to extenuate the effect of a leading line.

The use of closely spaced objects to act as a leading line.

Rider in pink by Tejvan Pettinger, Cycling magazine 2017.

Ledger News  Library Image, California USA.


These last two photographs illustrate the direction my eye takes when viewing the pictures.

Research and analysis :

For this exercise I examined many Photographers take on leading lines especialy Eugene Atget and Laszlo Moholy-Nagy.
The depth created by lines and the overlapping elements of Paris street photographer Eugene Atget to me is more a pictoral history or record of Paris before it became too developed than art, athough there are artistic elements to his work, it reminded me more of Packards photography recording rural Oxfordshire life at the turn of the 1900’s.
I disagree with the oca text that a photo appears transparent and that you look through it at the world., I believe that the camera is more of a window through which the photo is the view outside.
I also believe that the use of lines and other compositional elements and techniques can transform an image into more than that, an image more like a painting; a work of art if you will.
Laszlo Moholy-Nagy’s impact with the Bauhaus school of thought and his encouragement to his students to use high viewpoints to create flat and abstract images is to me very interesting and something I was naturally doing without schooling on the subject.

Reflections :

Leading lines was one of the first photographic elements I learned once I started to get more serious about photography.

So it was no surprise to me that I felt comfortable with this exercise.

I am also getting better at reflecting upon my work and also at researching the different subjects.

Here in lies the rub with my train of thought on studying great Photographers works, they’re great for inspiration but where does your art or style start and where does theirs end ? and is this really important ?
This is something I’m going to ponder more on as I progress through the course.


Exercise 1.2 – The Point

Brief :

1. Take two or three photographs in which a single point is placed in different parts of the frame.

2. Take a number of images in which a point is placed in relationship to the frame.

Process :

I decided to go with four photographs, one set was Aircraft in flight and the other a geometric scene of dusters on a radiator.

I again used my trusty 18 – 55 mm.

Research and analysis :

For this exercise I looked up Gestalt theory mainly in Wikipedia.

Essentialy it describes the way we view the world and percieve it.

My best reference was an old science series I remember watching way back in 1980 called ” The real thing” hosted by presenter James Burke.

In it he explains that your eyes really don’t see and that it’s your brain that interprets the signals from your retina and decides, based upon experience ; what the world should look like.

As he says in episode one ” There’s a shape in your head for every shape outside it” .

Reflections :

This exercise was more interesting to me than it first seemed.

I went out three times to photograph points in a frame on the streets of Fulham and failed miserably every time.

The problem was of visual clutter, no matter how garish the point, it was always lost within the visual noise that is a London street.

The park with it’s views across the river offered a more interesting perspective but again the ground level was entirely too cluttered for my taste, hence the Aeroplane shots.

I didn’t do four of those because an aeroplane fits the frame anywhere as long as it’s flying.

For the other shots I happened across a radiator with some cloths and a dart board above it.

This made for a simple and uncluttered environ to test out the different points within a frame theme.

I again only include two because to me the red light artfully  affixed with Blu-Tac would seem out of place and very noticeable anywhere within the image with the exception of a central and low to middle position within the frame.

In answer to question one of the brief, you evaluate pictures the same as all the others you view, nothing has changed except there’s now an unidentified object drawing your attention; the real question is “was it intentional” ?

I feel they should have purpose and enhance the structure of an image.

Yes, there is a right and a wrong place for a point and only an individual can judge for themselves if it works.

I believe a point can be in relation within an image and also help balance an image but placement is key as is it’s relevance.

Project 1 – The Instrument Exercise 1.1

Exercise 1.1

Take three or four exposures of the same scene. Don’t change anything on the camera and keep the framing the same.
Preview the shots on the LCD screen. At first glance they look the same, but are they ?

Perhaps a leaf moved with the wind, the light changed subtly, or the framing changed almost imperceptibly to include one seemingly insignificant object and exclude another.

Time flows, the moment of each frame is different, and, as the
saying has it, ‘you can’t step into the same river twice’.
Now bring up the histogram on the preview screen.

The histogram is a graphical representation of exposure – the camera’s sensitivity to light.

As you page through the images you can see small variations in the histograms.

Even though the pictures look the same, the histogram data shows that in a matter of seconds the world changes, and these subtle differences are recorded by the camera.

If you refine the test conditions – shooting on a tripod to fix the framing, moving indoors and closing the curtains to exclude daylight – still the histogram changes.

Probably some of the changes are within the camera mechanism itself; still, the camera is a sensitive enough instrument to record them.
Add the sequence to your learning log with the time info from your camera’s shooting data as your first images for Part One.

              15:07.42                             15:08.38

15:10.38                               15:12.53


I had my camera mounted on a tripod and set on auto mode.

The numbers below the images are the times, in 24 hour format; when the exposure occurred.

As you can see the images appear identical at first glance but are they ?

The reflections in the windows change and if you were to view the histogram the colours shift slightly both left to right and also in amplitude on the display.

The images, whether taken seconds apart or minutes; only show slight differences in Histogram shift but the difference is there.