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mollyc

macrumors 604
Original poster
Aug 18, 2016
7,896
48,464
Welcome to our P52! This project is designed to get you out with your camera once a week in a meaningful way. Each week I will post a prompt for you to consider. The prompts are merely suggestions, and you are free to shoot off topic if you wish. All images posted must be taken by you, be safe for work, and be taken with this project in mind. Please do not post archive photos. For a further discussion of the guidelines, please refer to this thread, and you can find the previous weeks linked there if you missed them. Feel free to join in at any time of the year, and you may go back to missed weeks if you still wish to participate.


Week 8: Fill the Frame

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This week we are going to focus on the opposite of our task from last week; rather than highlighting the subject by giving it breathing room, we are going to showcase the subject by filling the frame with it. Although this seems like an easy concept, there are some challenges that go along with composing images this way.

Here are a couple of things to keep in mind when you approach this week. Watch the edges of your frame; often a successful FTF image will have part of the story extend through the edges. Make sure your crops are appropriate, and don’t crop at the joint of a subject (elbows, wrists, knees, ankles, etc.). If you are shooting a wider composed image, take care to avoid chopping items off that leave awkward or extraneous bits on the edges that have no context. On the other hand, sometimes having items just cropped does help to tell the story more; this will be very photo-dependent and you’ll have to use your best judgment as to what stays and goes; remember you can always use the clone tool if necessary to clean up the edges.

Negative space in these types of images should be kept to a minimum, and ideally not even appear in the frame, other than perhaps some blur from depth of field, or a little bit to not avoid awkward crops as described above. When you fill the frame, everything in the photo should somehow relate to the overall story. If there is depth of field blur, take care to keep it related to the entire image by color or pattern to help with the idea of filling everything in.

One of the easiest ways to fill the frame is to shoot macro or close up. By getting in close to your subject, you can eliminate all distractions and have the viewer instantly figure out what the story of your image is.

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Another good way to tackle this technique is to find a scene that has a lot of repeating shapes or colors. This is a good non-macro technique for those of you unable or uninterested in composing close up. You'll notice that while the below images do have a separation of subject and background, the background is obviously a blur of the foreground and the shapes and colors still come through as filling the frame with the same content.

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Street and documentary styles of images usually work very well for filling the frame. Here again, watch your edges and be deliberate with what you have in or out of the frame. Often for these types of photos you will use a narrower aperture to capture more of the scene and/or action.

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The next two images do have items that are cropped from the edges of the frame, but you can see that each item deliberately relates back to the story being told.

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Getting close in portraits is another technique. The two children examples I took in my beginning days of photography. Ideally I would have had a bit more of the hand on the left side and all of the camera included, and I wish that I had captured the full left eye of the baby; I included them here to show you an idea of a close portrait, but also as examples of a bad crop and what not to do. Still, the concept of fillling the frame for these works well, even if the compositions are slightly off.

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Whichever approach (or approaches) you choose this week, make sure that your subject takes up the entire frame and tells a story. Keep negative space to a minimum, and keep in mind some of the other compositional aspects we've talked about recently like using the rule of thirds and keeping your main subject fully intact.
 

mollyc

macrumors 604
Original poster
Aug 18, 2016
7,896
48,464
I really like this image and see you are working again on the ROT composition.

Keep in mind, for fill the frame, your subject should take up nearly the entire photo, edge to edge. The colors and background here are really pretty, but the subject here is the bird, right? And maybe the pedestal thing he is standing on...but the story is really about the bird (I assume). And the bird is only taking up about 5% of the image. All that background is working as negative space here, although it's busier that what we were aiming for last week.

I want you to get in close to your subject. 🙂
 
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mollyc

macrumors 604
Original poster
Aug 18, 2016
7,896
48,464

Closer!

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Closer! Fill the frame! (as an aside, I would have moved Mr. Piggy from under the plant to avoid the leaf distractions.

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I like this one! It's clearly a photo of an artwork, and the wooden boards take up the entire image. So you filled the frame with the entire artwork (or one subject of the artwork).



This guy is probaby a bit awkward to really fill the frame with; there is still a lot of negative space under his beak; it might not be the best subject for this challenge.

Make your subject fill the entire frame. ❤️
 
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