Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Breaking Rule #2. Keep the center of interest in sharp focus

I went out on my daily bike ride today with my Canon S1 in search of opportunities to break some rules. Rule 2, Keep the center of interest in sharp focus, is a hard one to break and end up with an image that doesn't call for the Delete key. Of course, FP's point is that by breaking rules, you discover what might be interesting, and then you can pursue it, or you get lucky and even nail it right then.

Anyway, I found a nice scenic view of a bit of swamp near the bike path which has some pretty purple flowers (I dont know what they are called--just called weeds, perhaps). I took two shots using one of the front plants as my reference: in one case, I focused on the subject (the purple wild flowers), and the other on the front plant.

While I don't think either of these shots is a keeper, I did learn something about these flowers. I found that these purple flowers make a very nice OOF backdrop--very impressionistic. I might try some more with this, picking the foreground I want, or even just going for a totally impressionistic look (and shooting with my SLR instead of the S1). That's another point--different lenses would show the OOF plants differently per differences in Bokeh. I can see some more experiments here...

5 Comments:

Blogger Falc said...

Hi Neil,

A hell of a difficult one this, to make the out of focus bit the part which pulls the eye. I guess the two red berries do make the eye snap to them, but they don't hold it long.

Its an interesting rule to break, and it takes some thought. I think serendipity might have a big part in cracking this one;-)

7/27/2005 1:40 PM  
Blogger clp69 said...

I agree with Keith on this one. The part of the image that is in focus is drawing the eye. To get an interesting shot while breaking this rule is not going to be easy.

7/28/2005 7:02 AM  
Blogger Dahkota said...

I think my current challenge entry breaks this rule, but the comments go back and forth on it. It is very difficult to do though! I think the trick is to have a really boring part of the image in focus and a striking part out of focus. I agree with you about the purple flowers. The purple green would make an excellent backdrop. I love the fluidity of it.

7/29/2005 11:38 AM  
Blogger JK Fifield said...

What I'm getting out of breaking this particular rule is that the point isn't to try and have an out of focus subject and an in-focus secondary component. Instead, the point is that we shouldn't just assume that a certain dominant object should be in focus. If we're willing to shift our plane of focus, it will open up new possibilities we wouldn't normally notice.

8/03/2005 11:14 AM  
Blogger AJAger said...

I definitely agree that the purple flowers make for an excellent OOF background. I think that the second picture would be a lot stronger without the second stem just cutting into the lower left.

8/28/2005 1:00 PM  

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