Point of view (photography)

NOTE: the subject in photography is the thing you are focusing on. This can be a person or an object.

Where your camera is in relation to the subject can make or break a photograph. I’ve already spoken about how important getting in close is.

But how low or how high you go is also crucial. There are many points of view to a photograph. The viewpoint of where you are when you get your camera out of your pocket is rarely the best one.

If your viewpoint is looking down on someone, you will almost always produce an image which, at best, will be poor. Probably it will be very bad.

Lowering yourself, getting down on one knee (if possible) or standing on something to elevate you can all have a huge impact on what you are trying to achieve.

If it is a person or animal you are photographing, getting down (or up) to their eye level will have a dramatic effect on the quality of your image. Particularly important when photographing children this.

You will not find any professional photographer assigned to take an image of a child who does not get down to their eye level. It would be unthinkable.

Here are general the rules:

  • Kids/animals – photograph them at their eye level.
  • Get down low look up – if you want to make the subject seem powerful
  • Get up high – to make people look weak (or to change the background in the image).

This technique can result in dirty clothes. But who ever remembered a pair of muddy jeans when they looked at that shot of the child playing with slugs?


NOTE 2: My workshop on photography and press releases is on March 24, 2015. Signup is up there in the corner.



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