Doug Stockdale's Singular Images

October 12, 2007

Broken Fence; re-do

Filed under: Art, Photography, Projects/Series — Doug Stockdale @ 5:02 pm

Broken Fence v2

Broken Fence  (from the series: Transitional Seam)

One of my advantages on this new series, Transitional Seam, is the ability to work on an image and then realize that it could be a little bit better.  I can then head back out again for a re-shoot, a photograhers Mulligan. Now I can not control the sky and clouds, such as I would not be able to re-create the image in the previous post Mobile Home. But we are rather blessed here in Southern California with a LOT of clear blue skies.  As we get further into the Fall, this is going to change, but for the moment, I can almost recreate an image by returning at about the same time of day.

I had posted the earlier version of Broken Fence over on Stills for a peer review, and they see everything. They were the ones who have helped me understand that I have a tendency to dip my images to the lower right.  In this case, they pointed out that I did not pay enough attention to the upper left edge and had included some phone lines etc which was distracting.  And they were right, as I had not paid enough attention to that side of the image.

I know that I need to look at the edges of my images, but like a lot of folks I get caught up with the main attraction and sometimes forget to give all the edges serious examination.  As an American who reads left to right and top to bottom, I am especially vunerable on the left upper corner and edge, as I will skim past that area and not come back to it as much as I should.  I guess you could say that I do that with both creating the inital exposure as I do in my post-editing and printing;- )

So okay, why the Mulligan for this image? First, I wanted to eliminate the phone wires as they do not help with what I am trying to suggest; a home site that has been knocked down, leaving the trees and the property now going into a state of decline. All waiting for the pending land developers. The revised image was accomplished by making the exposure from a lower height on the tripod and moving the lens slightly to the right. The phone lines are now gone and I’ve added some more broken fence on the right side. Nice.

I also wanted to create some separation between the broken fence on the ground and the bottom edge of the image frame. That in turn reduced the amount of sky by a little and pushed the tops of the palm trees to the top edge. I’m okay with that, as it places a little more emphasis on the broken fence and the implications of that fence. I also darken the foregound a little more, emphasising the ruts in the field, which I think is enough to take your eyes on a small journey to the fence and beyond over the hill to the palms. Also nice.

Overall, I like the second version much better. Sometimes I don’t have this opportunity, but with this series going deep rather than wide, it has its advantages.

Best regards, Doug

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