July Theme – Break the Rules

Forums Monthly Theme July Theme – Break the Rules

This topic contains 6 replies, has 2 voices, and was last updated by  Peter Robinson 5 days, 16 hours ago.

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    Peter Robinson

    The theme for June is now closed

    The theme for July is

    Break the Rules

    Following on from last months’ theme of Intentional Camera Movement I’ve decided to choose another theme to make members think a bit about their photography. For the sunny month of July I challenge our members to break the rules. After all we’re often told rules are there to be broken. We’ve all been guided how we should take the perfect picture, but this can make our photography predictable. I’d like to see our members show they can reinvent their photography  in a thoughtful and creative dimension.

    The horizons don’t have to be level. The subject doesn’t have to be sharp or placed on a third. Try placing the subject on the edge or in the centre to create a more dramatic image. We’ve seen members turn photographs upside down to good effect and strengthen the picture.

    I’ve found some examples of what I mean on the ‘York Place Studios’ website here:

    York Place Studios photographic style

    There’s also an interesting article on it in Amateur Photographer here:


    Thanks for your contributions.

    It’s easy to upload your pictures now. The best way to insert an image is to use the right hand icon in the edit menu. It looks like a picture of a mountain. If you wish you can prepare your picture before hand to have a long side of something like 650px at 72ppi, but the upload dialogue box has a resize option.

    There’s no restriction on when the photograph was taken so search though your archives show us what you can produce. If you would like to suggest any topics for the monthly theme please let me know. Thank you to everyone who contributed to last months’ theme.


    Peter Robinson

    I’ll kick off this month’s theme with a heavily cropped image that just concentrates on the shadow of the marching cadets.

    I think it shows that you can have several pictures within a single picture. Cropping in a unconventional manor can make the photo more noticeable and encourage a debate on whether it ‘works’ or not.


    Peter Robinson

    This was quite a challenge to take and to get a result I had to use some unconventional settings. Not strictly breaking the rules, but certainly using a different technique than I usually employ.  It was taken in a darken room with only a flashing disco light on. The dancing ladies were waving their glow sticks and I’d been asked to photograph it.

    Obviously using a flash in the normal way would have killed the atmosphere so after some experimentation I decided to use second curtain sync with a reduced power flash set manually. The would hopefully freeze some of the movement. I set the camera fully manual with a shutter speed of about 1/4 second to record the ambient light and movement of the glow sticks then the flash fired at the end of the exposure to freeze the image. Iso was about 800 and aperture f6.3.



    Well for me Peter, that is an amazingly calculated bit of camera work( and I thought you just shot on   P—-LOL) With an end result of one very beautiful photograph. Great camera work–excellent picture–  a  lesson for all of us.


    Peter Robinson

    Thanks very much for your comment Ken. Using program mode would have been a disaster. You have to take control. It’s my ambition to stop people using Program mode and take control of their cameras. I know this photo isn’t pin sharp and is over saturated, but I got a result that I’m happy with and the charity I took them for were pleased with it.


    Peter Robinson

    This is a photo I took during on of my assignments for Cheshire East at Crewe Library. The class were learning to build visual electronic toys. I broke the rules by twisting the camera to add a bit of drama and got in close with a wide angle lens which has introduced some distortion. Not politically correct for the purist photographs but I think it enhances the atmosphere. What do you think?


    Peter Robinson

    Here’s a couple of experiments I tried while playing around with my camera. The first one was created by twisting the camera while using a shutter speed of around 1/30 second. I found it difficult to keep the subject centred.

    The second one is of the same flower bed, but just zooming the lens while taking the shot. To get the best result I found it’s best to start zooming first then take the exposure using a long exposure again. These are not everyone’s cup of tea of course, but it’s a it of fun to try these techniques out and see what you get.

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