Friday, April 09, 2010
A long time ago, when I was a fledgling graphic designer and commercial illustrator, I landed a gig creating renderings of home designs for a local builder. Looking over the first set of rough drawings, the client said the houses looked good enough, but "you need to find a way to frame the subject to keep the viewer's eye from wandering off the page." We eventually settled on adding strategically placed tree limbs and other landscaping here and there to do the trick.
Taking a long walk on a long pier to get close to the Sturgeon Bay Canal lighthouse, I noticed the meandering overhead catwalk wrapped itself around the edges of the frame in an M.C. Escher-like configuration. Looked good to me. Plus, the Red Rule was calling.
I nestled the lighthouse just right of center -- I often try to imagine diagonal lines crossing the frame from the corners. I'll either place the subject along one of those diagonals, or put them in one of the four "V's" formed by the crossing lines. It's kind of a mashup of the rule of thirds and the golden mean. Weird but it works.
I finished it up with some High-pass post processing, which simultaneously increases and decreases contrast. Weird but it works, too. I'll explain it further sometime when I fully figure it out.
Until then , have a great weekend.
Photograph © 2010 James Jordan.