Photography Composition - Line

Line is an important element of design. Lines can be used to create texture, shapes and tone. Go exploring indoors and outdoors with your camera and look for examples of line in its simplest form. Think formally and conceptually about the term “line.” Take many photos of lines while exploring different angles and proximities to your subject. Create a contact sheet showing at least two photos that best express the design element of line.

This assignment I found to be more difficult than you would think. It started yesterday when I went driving around looking for line element photograph subject. While I found many things that would have worked great I found it hard to find a place to stop, park, and get close enough to shoot. One of the best things I found was a barn falling down with all kinds of incredible lines with the exposed roof and beams, but due to the 2 feet of snow this month, I really could not get close enough to it.

I settled on 4 photos. You will see the “beautiful” gray skies of Ohio in each photo. All photos were taken on My Canon Powershot A40, using a cloudy light balance.

1. The transformer power station. From the highway driving by this seemed like an ideal place to find great line subject. Once I was able to find it, I discovered the entire station was fenced off at quite a distance. I decided to use the element of the fence as an a close element but not the focal point of the photo. Even though the transformers are in focus there is so much going on the lines seem to blur together. It is great contrast with the simple diagonals form the fence and with straight free lines form the wires above. I shot this 1/50 F14.

2. Best Buy was one of the first things that came to mind with this assignment. A few weeks ago I remember walking in and noticing the many posts blocking the entrance and how they were not all straight in a row. I remember them being bright yellow a few months ago, so I was slightly disappointed to find them muted down. I think this photo is really interesting as it does have the reflection in the door and interesting grid from the door as well as the perspective created by the posts, which lead to the red horizontal lines going up. I shot this photo at 1/80 F14.

3. This photo was taken at the transformer power station as well. As I was getting into my car somewhat disappointed I looked up and saw the chaos of power lines crossing as they moved away from the station. I thought it was interesting how they created a natural focal point on the dark pole towards the center. I also like the contrast of thick and thin lines. I shot this photo at 1/200 F14.

4. This power line structure I drove past thinking, “I should really stop that is perfect, and there is a great place to pull off the road”. But of course I didn’t stop. The next day I made a trip back out. I took a few different shots of this, looking straight up from inside, looking from a distance, and this photo, which is looking up one of the large corners. I like the complexity of this structure. There are so many angles and different sized lines. I like how the corner takes you up into the structure I shot this photo at 1/1500 F8.

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