Rich Ditch's Photography Blog

January 13, 2009

Horizontal Vertical or Both

Filed under: Birds, comparisons, composition, favorite places, Gilbert Water Ranch — richditch @ 10:37 pm
Black-crowned Night-Heron horizontal

Black-crowned Night-Heron horizontal

Most photographers working with DSLR’s shoot most of their photos as horizontal compositions, sometimes called “landscape” mode. These cameras are just easier to hold and operate this way, especially if you don’t have a professional model or haven’t added an extra grip with a duplicate set of the major controls placed for vertical operation. So, its easy to get stuck in a “default” landscape mentality.

But lots of subjects are better suited to vertical (or “portrait” mode) compositions, and you should try to think of each subject in that format whenever possible.

When you’ve got a good subject that is relatively stationary and tolerates your presence for a while, then by all means try making compositions as both horizontal and vertical as I’ve done here with this Black-crowned Night-Heron at the Water Ranch in Gilbert, AZ.

Black-crowned Night-Heron vertical

Black-crowned Night-Heron vertical

Usually it is fairly obvious which format works better with a subject, but many times you can create pleasing images of a single subject as both landscape and portrait mode shots. And by doing so you’ll have more flexibility for the use of the basic image, whether it is for publication, a web gallery, or hanging on your wall.

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