Friday, September 21, 2012

Exploring With A Camera ~ Allowing Space

In Kat's Exploring With The Camera this month we've been looking at space. Creative space that we purposely allowed to enhance the object of the photo.  I discovered that finding space in my photos was a little difficult! I love to fill the frame and get up close so I can see every tiny detail. I tend to do that even when I'm not shooting in macro. With a little perseverence I managed to come up with a few.
Space in a photo can be used as a backdrop. The space around the object doesn't have to be a solid color. It can have textures and colors such as this hay around the pumpkin. The hay creates an interesting background.

Space can also be used to frame the object. The interesting brick wall not only surrounds the window, but it helps tell the story of where and how old the window might be. A little piece of history about this window, it is in a house that was built in 1852.

In macro photography it's essential that you beware of the background. If the background is too busy, it's hard to see the object and it's details. A soft, blurred background lets you focus completed on the dried berry.
The use of a neutral background can balance th busy details of the gumball. I picked the gumball up and placed it on a piece of wood for this photo. If I had left it on the ground you would have been distracted by the rocks, sand, dried leaves, and sticks.

Contrast between the object and the space around it can help the viewer focus in on the subject. This time I took advantage of nature's on contrast and left space around the fuzzy thingy. I started just to post that I didn't know what it was, but then decided to Google it!  These fuzzy objects are oak galls caused by tiny wasps.  The wasps secrete chemicals that cause the plant to create the gall as a home for the developing larvae, which grow tucked safe inside the gall structure. The developing insects eat plant tissue on the inside of the gall. I'm not so sure I wanted to know that I was messing with a wasp creation!

Let's go back to the use of space!!  The space in this photo is not only blurred so the flowers stand out, but there is also a good contrast between the flowers and the background. The combination of those two factors make the viewers eyes go immediately to the flowers.
It's also nice to have space around the subject if you want add text!
Once again I am reminded to take a step back, look at the larger picture, and see if I can enhance the subject with allowed space.
kat eye view


  1. Great photos. Yes, I love mushrooms. Thanks so much for visiting.

  2. Hi Cathy,

    But even you have your macro's I love the space, made by the depth of field, great examples of space too. Like this serie a lot.

  3. Lovely photos & great use of space, I love the flowers in the 2nd last shot & excellent research to discover a name for your 'fuzzy thingy'.

  4. gorgeous photos!! i tend to fill the frame as well, so i might try giving my focal points a little room.

  5. Awesome post. So many great photos and some good photo advice too. I really liked the Window shot, the Gumball and that last shot of the sunset.

  6. Wonderful exploration, Cathy! I'm glad you perservered to find the space. It's there! You found some great examples and I love the information you provided on the oak gall along the way. Thanks for joining in Exploring with a Camera!

  7. I have a feeling this was a difficult one for you Cathy, I know how you love macro, but you did a fabulous job, all of them are so very, very nice.

  8. I always want to fill the frame as well! Good examples of the use of space in your macro images - even when you are getting in close, the subjects are highlighted by the interesting textures you have surrounded them with.

  9. You did such a good job of explaining this concept with your words and photos. Your macros are terrific, and I love the last one with its important message. This was a good exercise for me too.....I need to remember to step back and look at the larger picture when I am shooting an image.

  10. Like you, I usually tend to fill the frame. I love your macro shots. That dried berry certainly got me wondering and the blurred background and the space around it meant that the berry held my attention.


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