My husband and I went into NYC today to see his aunt who was up from Florida. Only a 45 minute drive it, it’s close enough we can run into the city for a meal, but long enough we always feel we need to get our “money’s worth” of our time there. After a quick lunch, we walked through Central Park and took Charlotte on the Carousel. As we walked back to the car, I spotted a line of empty park benches and I knew we had to take a quick picture!
One fundamental composition rule in photography is using lines, trailing off into the distance, to give your photograph depth and movement. The eye naturally moves across the image and gives the portrait geographic interest and texture. This may not be the perfect use of lines since they’re opposite Charlotte, but I like the way they lead into her face and serve to frame the picture and balance her. For a portrait, avoid strong horizontal lines through your photos, as they’ll break up the “flow”. In every day life, these lines can be found on streets, athletic bleachers, rows of flowers, etc. Just stay off railroad tracks – it’s dangerous and often illegal!
The two urban shots in New York city, although amateur, use these lines to create interest and order in the otherwise busy cityscape. Both seem to pull the viewer into the depth of the city. Either of these would make a perfect back drop for a family picture.
As we were walking to the Carousel, I saw a beautiful patch of grass light by beautifully soft sunlight, lush with grass and trees with the Central Park South in the background. I don’t know why I felt rushed, but I walked by, thinking we’d just take a nice family photo in the park later, Later, however, the sun was behind the buildings completely and I couldn’t find a nice patch of grass with as beautiful a back ground without walking in the opposite direction of the car. The lesson I learned today was to never walk by good light!