Breaking the Rules

September 28, 2014  •  Leave a Comment

I know the rules of composition. I try to be attentive to the placement of objects and the rule of thirds and noting where the scene is bright or dark. This photo from Bishop Hill, Illinois, breaks most of the rules. But it appeals to me. One thing I notice is how the fence draws your eye into the frame. Then your eye follows the windows in a counter-clockwise pattern to the leaves above and back to the left again where they obscure the columns. And the vertical columns direct your eye back to the fence. And then there's that tree, smack dab in the center of the frame. I suppose one could crop the two windows on the right, but then you omit the interesting wall detail. And how do you split the barrel of flowers that sits on the ground between the windows? I like it.

Bishop Hill was the site of a religious, utopian community founded in 1846 by Eric Janson. While it did not last long, some consider this town the beginning of Swedish America. At it's peak, more than 1000 lived here, but now the population is barely more than 100. Several buildings still stand and are part of historic preservation efforts.


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