Let’s face it, people are typically photographed two ways: Portrait and Landscape. If they are standing or sitting upright, we tend to shoot with the camera in the portrait orientation. If they are sitting, reclining or laying down, we tend to use the landscape orientation. Unless you are shooting a square aspect medium format form factor, when shooting you seldom consider that ratio between landscape and portrait: the square.
Consider this image of Art Model Brooke Lynne taken at my recent figure workshop. The figure is not standing so the temptation to shoot landscape lured me into a horizontal mindset. The DSLR form factor forces me to choose one or the other and I picked the easiest grip to hold. The abstract pose struck by the model suggests a way to go with the crop.
Rather than choose traditional portrait or landscape, why not go square and be a little uncommon? To me the interesting part of the pose is the back. It isn’t something we see featured in photographs very often. My goal was to celebrate the human form but also make us pause for a moment to consider just exactly what we are viewing. To get from the original capture to the crop above, what is necessary?
Looking at the execution of the crop, there are several key crop concepts that drove this preliminary crop.
- The shape of the pose is roughly square. A square crop can emphasize that.
- The frame is filled and overflowing with the figure isolating the pose and the dynamics of certain portions of the picture.
- Crop Rotation was used to enhance the angles and provide good shape to the white space resulting in three of the four corners.
This composition might not be your cup of tea and that’s ok. Keep your eye on Holy Crop! over the coming days as we turn this crop on its head and I show you the crop I absolutely adore…
Rikk Flohr © 2012