Sunday, August 30, 2015

Addition and Subtraction

Front End Detail, Waynesville, NC  -  2015
(Click on photo to enlarge.)

I once read that the difference between painting and photography is that painting is about addition, and photography is about subtraction. With painting, you start with a blank canvas and add whatever content you want included in your composition. When using a camera, you start with everything that is present, and by various means subtract what you do not want included in your photo.

In the photo above I knew I had to subtract the content that I didn't want included in my photo: mainly, other cars and the other people viewing the cars. I chose to focus attention on the exposed components of this car's front end instead of trying to capture the entire car. I thought this was one of the more interesting aspects of this vehicle, and by squatting down for a low viewing angle and framing tight, I could exclude unwanted and distracting elements. By simply learning to subtract, anyone can make better and more interesting photos.

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