Have you ever had someone get so close to you that you’re uncomfortable? Almost everyone I know has their own personal space. They may let you invade it for awhile – for a hug or a comforting touch – but we tend to enjoy our personal space for the most part. I wonder if that’s why so many people take photographs that are very far away and very wide?
I have nothing against wide photos – in fact I have to push myself to take more of them because my natural instinct is to get close. For me, things look very different when they’re close than they do when they’re far away. You can see little nuances you would likely not have noticed before.
Take, for instance, this photo:
A cute little picture of some drift wood that I saw down at the falls a few days ago. It’s kinda neat to look at, but let’s be honest: there’s really nothing special about this photo.
Now, how about this one?
Looks quite a bit different, doesn’t it? It’s the same pile of wood taken only a few seconds after I shot the first photo. I know, for me, the second photo is much more interesting to look at than the first. With the second photo I can see so many different textures – I even notice the dried maple leaves a great deal more than I did in the first photo. There even seems to be more colors going on! With the first photo you basically see gray and brown. On the close up photo you see gray, dark brown, light brown, cream, beige, white, black – a whole host of earth toned colors.
That is my tip – shoot close! Find something, shoot it wide, then get really close to it. Figure out which photo you like better – the closer one or the further away one. I know tons of Vermont photographers who enjoy far away photos, and many Vermont photographers who play with macro all day! Never be afraid to shoot really close up on something!!