Assignment 2: Elements of design

The aim of this assignment is to bring together all the elements of design covered in this chapter through a set of photos. I chose to select my own specific subject matter for this exercise, largely because of an unexpected opportunity to photograph the former US airbase at Upper Heyford in Oxfordshire. The site, semi-derelict for a number of years offered an interesting range of subjects and despite a chilling wind, we were blessed with a sunny afternoon in early January.

The first image illustrates curves, a suggested triangle and the size of the hanger in the frame means it completely dominates the image as a single point.

ISO 200, f9, 1/160, 15mm

The second image shows a single point. Whilst it is clearly the focal point of the image it doesn’t dominate the photo, the road running past the derelict building creates a strong diagonal line through the frame.

ISO 200, f9, 1/160, 21mm

In this image we have two points. Whilst the hanger and the rusty ‘box’ are of very different scale, the composition allows both to occupy key points in the frame and both to be focal points for the viewer.

ISO 200, f6.3, 1/50, 24mm

Another image of the hangers. This time the two hangers fill a significant portion of the frame and give two points to focus on. The use and positioning of the sunlight draws extra focus to the smaller of the hangers in the frame, the sunlight creating a diagonal line to this hanger too.

ISO 200, f9, 1/250, 31mm

This image taken earlier in the afternoon has more hangers in the frame, multiple points. The position of the hangers splits the image in three, despite them being orientated differently. The road/runways in front of the hangers give a strong diagonal line to the bottom right corner.

ISO 200, f11, 1/160, 20mm

Moving away from the hangers, a different kind of derelict building. I’m not altogether sure what this building was used for. Inside it had been stripped of all traces of previous use. The combination of pillar, balcony, ladders and railings gives a strong linear feel of rectangular lines.

ISO 200, f9, 1/20, 35mm

Looking from a control tower, a very different view to the desolate runways and hangars. This view shows part of the former airfield in use as a car store. The strong diagonal runs from the left hand bottom corner. The clusters of cars offer a multiplicity of points.

ISO 200, f9, 1/200, 15mm

Picking a more detailed view, a very obvious collection of lines were under our feet on the tarmac, curves and in this case diagonals.

ISO 200, f6.3, 1/80, 31mm

Back to the hangers, a well positioned puddle gave a chance to illustrate the curves. Combining the hanger and its reflection creates an oval, additionally the puddle perimeter itself features curves. A single hanger gives a single point of focus to the image.

ISO 200, f10, 1/250, 15mm

Another detailed view, here a collection of angular but distinct shapes have come to rest and settled in a unordered pattern.

ISO 200, f9, 1/50, 53mm

Another detailed view, one that in my eye implied two opposing triangles. I’ve illustrated these by red lines in the second image.

ISO 200, f9, 1/60, 15mm

A different view of the hangers as the sun began to set. Using the silhouette effect caused by the contrast between light and dark, the hangers seemed to connect together in a stretched implied triangle, an effect partly achieved by removing the details in the buildings.

ISO 200, f8, 1/3200, 28mm

Another detail shot, this time the top of the roof line of the hanger. Heavily cropped, the shapes suggested a rhythm along the line, almost like strange musical notation.

ISO 200, f8, 1/800, 70mm

The final image, picked out in the concrete wall of a building shows a repeating pattern formed from strong diagonals.

ISO 200, f5.6, 1/100, 46mm

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