Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Photography 101 - Lesson 6


If you've been following my blog for long, you already know I love taking pictures of patterns. I even made a calendar with pattern photos.

I won't be showing any of the upcoming calendar photos here, because that's like peeking ahead, and I don't do that.

One of my favorite places to find patterns is at shops that have stuff for sale. In preparation for this post, I wandered around the mall with my little camera and managed to get kicked out of the American Eagle Outfitters store for taking pictures of the folded edges of shirts they had stacked on a table (the edges made cool stripes). An employee came up to me and threatened to confiscate my camera if I didn't knock it off, so I left.

These are cinnamon rolls for sale at a street fair, not at American Eagle Outfitters.

And these are beeswax candles for sale, with little plastic bees on them (note the use of diagonals).

Stores, however, are not the only place to find patterns. Anywhere you see repeated objects, you're seeing a pattern, like these ropes on an old sailing ship.

It's time now for a Bonus Lesson:

An odd number of objects is usually more pleasing than an even number.

If you have the choice of photographing two ducks in a row or three, you're probably better off with three. Keep in mind, though, that this is not a hard-and-fast rule. These dancers look fine with four of them. Note: I did not take this picture. It came to me (uncredited) in an email.

Finally, here is a sub-lesson under the patterns banner:

Broken patterns

When you see a pattern with one item that doesn't fit, take the picture. That lone item will grab the eye. These bell peppers were part of February's Patterns calendar photo.


Take pictures of patterns. Try to find at least one broken pattern. If you want to share any of your pictures, post them on your blog and leave a comment here with the link.

Previous Lessons:

Photography 101 - Lesson 1 and Homework

Digital Photography 101 - Quickie Version

Digital Photography 101 - Update

Photography 101 - Lesson 2

Photography 101 - Lesson 3

Photography 101 - Lesson 4

Photography 101 - Lesson 5


paw said...

I hope you're getting a lot of traffic with this series - it's not that much harder to take good pictures than it is to take so-so pictures, and far more rewarding. Just hearing once something as simple as the rule of thirds can totally change a person's shots. Good job!

Christina said...

I'm just impressed that you got kicked out of American Eagle! Way to go!!!

SkyePuppy said...

Paw, mon cher,

You're absolutely right. Just an extra moment to compose the photo can make all the difference.

Good to see you're still stopping by once in a while!


I told the story to my daughter, who used to work at American Eagle a few years ago, and she said they've always had that no-camera policy. I'm such a renegade...

janice said...

I'm learning quite a bit, Ms. Puppy and I'm really enjoying the class. Thank you for the informative instruction.

Right now I'm waiting for the sun to come out before I turn in my homework.