I set out today to scout out a location for a future shoot of the Huntington building, but was drawn in by the new holocaust memorial by Daniel Libeskind. There is a great story engraved on the two large masses. The mass is divided by a void in the form of the Star of David. It breaks though even though it is lacking mass or proper form. The star is never complete, and no matter where you view it from, it is always broken, but you still find yourself trying to align your perspective to make it whole. It’s a strikingly simple gesture. But very powerful.
I have been studying Julius Shulman recently, and have gained “some” insights into his compositional techniques. I have become very conscious of my process recently. If I have learned anything from Julius Shulman, its that the architecture has to inform the photographer on how it should be photographed. It’s like the relationship between a photographer and model. You have to understand what the architecture is trying to say if you have any chance of communicating it visually. Photographers use light dark values and leading lines to control the conversation. In the Holocaust photo, I want to show the strength and fragility of each form. There is a forward motion to the star that seem to break the mass apart.
It was quite cold that day and it started to snow, so I decided a interior shoot might be in order so I popped into the State House to see what might come of the visit. I wanted to work on some compositional techniques. Mostly what I was working on was finding good leading lines, strong graphic composition, and defining perimeters. The state house proved to be a great subject. My biggest challenge shooting this was hand holding my camera perfectly level and centered in the space, in a fairly dim environment. If I was off by half an inch the symmetry was blown. Tripods are not allowed here as the guard informed me. Very friendly guards by the way…. The last shot of the day was walking down High St. when I saw the large neon sign. I knew it would create a nice visual entry point for my image and had strong leading line down toward the doorway. I framed it up with the mullions on the left and the treeline and trash can on the right. and I waited for someone to enter the space underneath the sign. I would have preferred someone wearing white, but I realized at that moment I was parked in a tow away zone, so I called it a day….all in all, pretty good day.
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