Exercise: Horizontal & Vertical Lines
Image 1: Is a park bench carved from a single tree trunk. I’ve been admiring this seat for some time and was really pleased when I was able to make use of it in an exercise.
The baseline and seat line are parallel and horizontal with the ground upon which the whole thing stands.
Although the image has horizontal lines that dominate it, I have photographed it at an angle to give it some life as I feel that a head-on shot would make it very static and uninteresting. Whilst it is intended for an exercise to demonstrate horizontals I do feel that some imagination can be brought into the work to make them more interesting.
Image 2: Is a Horsetail Weed and the dark bands form at the junction of the filament like leaves. If you look closely you’ll see that the dark bands have a very attractive pattern at their top end. Although this image has no set baseline for the horizontal bands to step from, I think that if all the images were just to show that aspect then it would be a very boring exercise. This image brightens up what could be a dull exercise.
Image 3: Is an image of a railway line that is passing through a level crossing and the diamond-shaped patterns are part of the road surface on either side of the rail. By cropping I think I managed to achieve an avant-garde feel to the picture. It appears to have a strong baseline and steps upward.
Image 4: Is a shot I took from Clacton pier and shows the coast road with the sea-defence wall and the wave-breaker concrete slabs. The pattern on these slabs gives a great horizontal strength to the baseline that the sea makes, with its horizontal lines of waves, coming up against them then rises with man-made paths and buildings until the hotel at the pinnacle with its parallel, horizontal rows of windows.
Image 5: Whilst this picture is yet another seat, it is a different kind of seat and as such I don’t think it breaks the requirement to be non-repetitious. The strong uprights that form the back of this structure definitely dominate the image and take away the impression that another seat is being portrayed.
Image 6: I think this is a contender, along with Image 8:, as the strongest image in both series. The entire picture is made up of verticals through its vertical axis and the supporting structures and fixtures have real-life vertical associations.
Image 7: Is the picture I like the most, from an artistic standpoint. Showing one side of bicycle stands at the railway station with further very tall verticals supporting the main subject in the foreground.
Image 8: Lots and lots of verticals and interest. A fence, recorded through a fence with vertical shadows, a lamp-post and power sub-station in the background. As I said earlier, a contender for the strongest image in either series.
It’s really amazing how many horizontals and verticals there are around us in everyday structures. I could probably have filled the entire brief from one location without too much effort. Although I appear to have repeated usage of the seat I do believe that the differences in their shape and construction does not preclude them from this exercise as repetitive. However, in any other exercises of this nature I must be aware of the dangers of becoming complacent.