Part two – Project 1 – Exercise 2.3
“Choose a subject in front of a background with depth. Select your shortest focal length and take a close low viewpoint, below your subject. Find a natural point of focus and take the shot.”
It was raining when I carried out this exercise so I came inside to take these images, in my hallway. Using a Canon 70D with my widest lens a Sigma 17-50mm at the shortest focal length 17mm (APS-C), with the model standing and me on my knees looking upwards with the camera hand-held…. [and on aperture priority mode s requested for this part of the course].
I couldn’t get to a better location (due to the rain) to take the images for this exercise, which were to be taken at a location with depth. My hallway does have depth but this was irrelevant when employing a ‘looking up’ position, which captured mostly the ceiling. From this position it was difficult to capture any background elements due to the angle of view from which the image was taken.
That said, I agree with the course notes, definitely NOT the basis for a portrait photo shoot. The face is distorted unflatteringly outwards (image 1 – f/2.8 1/13 sec.) when close to the subject. With a viewpoint further back the chest and body are over emphasised compared to the face (images 2 and 3 – f/2.8; 1/15 sec. and 1/6 sec. respectively), when it is the face you want as your main focal point in the frame for a portrait shot not the body. Also from this angle if you want eye contact with your subject, the subject has to look down which creates a double chin so again not a good look. I doubt I would have any recommendations or repeat bookings if I produced these to a client (thank you to my daughter for agreeing to be photographed in such a manner), so if nothing else this is a lesson learnt not to be repeated.
“You’ll see that a very wide lens together with a close viewpoint creates extreme perspective distortion. Gently receding lines become extreme diagonals and rounded forms bulge towards the camera. Space appears to expand. The low viewpoint adds a sense of monumentality, making the subject seem larger than it is, and tilting the camera adds to the effect as vertical lines dramatically converge. Not the ideal combination for a portrait shot!”
This completes my submission for Exercise 2.3. You can access Exercise 2.4 here.