Project 3: ‘What matters is to Look’

22nd April 2021

Find a good viewpoint, perhaps fairly high up (an upstairs window might do) where you can see a wide view or panorama. Start by looking at the things closest to you in the foreground… When you’ve got it, raise your camera and release the shutter.

OCA EYV (2014)

I was lucky to be shown around Centrepieces Mental Health Art Projects new workshop and a tutoring department in Bexleyheath Kent. The large studio space overlooks the town centre of Bexleyheath, so with my camera in hand I took some sneaky shots that incorporated foreground, mid-ground and background although because it is an urban shot the boundaries merge more than if I was looking at a mix of landscape and buildings.

Due to the fact that built-up areas are full of visual information with boundaries that blur into one another, I have included a diagram that shows how I have interpreted the fore, mid and backgrounds.

Rather than dividing the composition of the image into three sections that run horizontally across the picture plane, I have used sections that are already visibly created by the pavement and road lines which naturally lead the eye into segregating the view into foreground, mid-ground and background.

The foreground contains part of the building that I am in and a section of the town centre which includes a nearby tree, lamp post and a scattering of people. The mid-ground also contains a tree and lamp post and the amount of people present within the mid-ground has increased and includes a dense seated area of people. The mid-ground also includes TK Max and Weatherspoon buildings and a bus disappearing off the left side of the image. The background contains another shop, the buses one way system and two other unrecognisable buildings.

Technical

  • Camera: Panasonic Lumix DC-GH5
  • Lens: Lumix G Vario 14mm-42mm, f/3.5-5.6 (28mm-84mm 35mm equivalent) f/22, F14.0mm
  • Settings: Shutter Priority Mode: 1/1000, ISO 6400, W.B. Direct sunlight, Spot metering
  • File Type: RAW and jpg
  • Handheld

The Town Centre of Bexleyheath, Kent

Reflection

I am not quite sure of the aims and objective of this project because it was just snapping an image, unless of course I have missed the point of the brief. It may have been better if a variety of these shots were to be taken for comparison with different visual information present within the images to discuss.

Perhaps the exercise is encouraging us to observe and notice our surroundings and the details within it as well as the compositional values. Taking my camera everywhere with me and producing these types of shots frequently perhaps has made my attitude slightly blasé towards these type of images and perhaps I need to be reminded that going back to basics can be an eye opener.

That which makes this shot interesting is the height that it was taken without glass as an obstruction. So many times on the bus I have wished that I could open the window or stand on the roof to snap a shot without the filth, reflection and glare from the windows. This type of unwanted visual distraction would be fine if the glass is part of my theme, and it sometimes is, but on the odd occasion I have wanted that pure shot for my portfolio. So having a chance of that shot on this day was a pleasure.


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