Quick Thought: Perspective & Creativity

I live in Myrtle Beach, SC. It takes me about 7 minutes to drive to the coast. It’s a beautiful place for photographs. Beautiful, but redundant. Even in the most perfect sunrise or sunset, I’ve found myself stopping to think of how to set up a more creative shot. In my last post I talked about using long exposures to change up things a little bit: blur water and clouds to create a creamy/painted looking scene. Changing perspective is another way to open up your creativity.

Sunrise, Ocean Isle Beach, NC

Sunrise, Ocean Isle Beach, NC

USA Today’s YourTake featured a photograph of mine from Ocean Isle Beach, NC. It was a shot from February 2015’s sunrise. A lovely but plain, cloudless sunrise. Soft colors, sparkling sand and water, and a pier. I moved all over, took different shots but just wasn’t feeling it.

So I stopped. And looked. And thought. (and I had to think quickly before the sun was too high – it moves more quickly than you think).

There were little shells all over the beach. Usually people look down at shells. What if I used the shell as the main subject/foreground of my composition. We usually don’t get on the ground and look straight-on at a shell.

This perspective is different. Its not usual. I changed my settings to open my aperture, bring the shell into sharp focus, and blur my background. The sunrise was there, so was the pier and the sparkling sand and ocean. But I achieved a unique shot that I was (and still am) extremely happy with.

So the next time you feel in a rut, try changing your perspective. Stop, look around, and try something new.

Thanks for stopping by!

Using Leading Lines

Canon t4i | Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8 lens | 20mm, f/8, 1/60 ISO 400








When I was in college, I had just enough room in my last semester schedule to take Intro to Photography. It was the basics of manual photography, using only black and white film. I remember a lot from the class, but composition always sticks out in my mind. We didn’t cover the rule of thirds, but we did talk about lines: how to draw people into the photograph.

When I set about composing my shot, I look for lines. They help provide depth and assist in creating a three-dimensional look to a two-dimensional product. In the case of this photograph, I used the long, parallel lines of this dock in Pawleys Island, SC to help create that three-dimensional depth.

Composition isn’t usually a quick process. I spent a decent amount of time setting up about 30 different shots on this particular evening and came out with only one that I really liked. And that’s ok. The point is, to take your time, experiment, look for leading lines and other elements to make your composition more interesting.