Reflection help represent the third dimension.

Reflection help make small place look larger. Small public place use mirrors to create extra visual spaces.

Taking a picture is creating a two dimension representation of a scene in three dimensions.  The challenge of the photographer is to help the viewer appreciate the third dimension.  Using reflection on water help do this.  Reflection, along with the following techniques could be used to help represent the third dimension:

  • Leading lines create a perspective;
  • Reducing depth of field to do an effect similar to the human vision;
  • Using soft light’s will create longer shadows and will create volume;
  • A wide-angle lens coupled with foreground interest in the picture is also a great way to create volume.

Unless your intention is to create a flat two dimensions picture, you have advantage to use one of these techniques to help represent the third dimension.

Although this picture is not the typical composition for this subject, it is an example of using multiple techniques to create this representation of the third dimension.

  • The bridge getting smaller as it cross the water create a perspective;
  • The bridge also act as leading lines;
  • Its reflection in the water clearly show that there is more space near the photographer than farther away at its landing site;
  • The small house  reflection  in the water helps represent the third dimension.
  • Water always defines the horizontal plan.  Looking in the distance over a horizontal plan means there is three dimensions.

All these techniques help, however a good subject is still needed to make the picture work.  Using all the techniques in a photo won’t make a boring subject more appealing.

In this picture we should agree on the beauty of this small wooden bridge crossing the pond.  Combined with the red leaves at its base, along with the house reflection  in the water this bridge is an excellent subject.  Yellow leaves in the distance are bright in the sun.  Fall is such a lovely season in Maine!

When you find a great subject and you get good light, the next challenge to help your picture talk to the viewer is representing the third dimension.  Using some of these techniques might help you do so.

Does your picture help viewers appreciate the third dimension?

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