31 May 2011

Break Those Damn Rules!

Who made up the rules, and why do we have to follow them?

A friend, and long time pro photographer, looked at my portrait photography last year and the first thing that struck him was that I often didn't use the traditional method of framing single person portrait photographs and mostly used "landscape" instead. It got me to thinking about why we have rules at all in photography. Quite often in our attempts to follow these rules (rule of thirds etc.) we make dull, boring, yawn, the same as all the other, yuck, please shoot me now, looking photos and sometimes when we inadvertantly break the rules the result is quite pleasing, and a breath of fresh air to me.

Maybe we should discard the rules and strike out to make photographs that stir the human soul instead. Can emotion ever have a formula? Heck, I want a photo to move me in some way. It should either make me happy, or sad, or nostalgic, or angry, or any damn thing but impressed with how well the photographer has handled the technical aspect of his mundane subject so well.

I would feel a lot more righteous about all of this if I didn't fall into the same trap myself on such a regular basis... oh well, back to the drawing board.

1 comment:

  1. If you have "the feel" you need no rules. Rules are for amateurs to learn what's catchy. People with the feel naturaly see catchy moments. People with rules are making pictures with the rulers.

    First pics are natural beauties, second are learned...

    Who cares: bottom line is the wow-factor of printed photo on the wall :))

    PS: great photo, by the way :)