Seeing Eye to Eye

Get Eye Level 

 
When photographing children or animals it’s almost always a good idea to get down to their level. Try to get eye to eye with your subject. You may have to kneel or sit on the floor in order to get eye level with them, but by doing so, you’ll more often than not, get a much better image. This technique makes your subject and the viewer feel more comfortable.  

I know this tip, or technique might seem obvious. I’ve seen many people just do it without giving it a thought when taking pictures. That’s great, but knowing this simple compositional technique and putting it into practice will improve your photos. Doing so, invites the viewer of the image into the subject’s world. When looking down on children or animals you oftentimes make them appear weak and distant to the viewer. Remember, get down to their eye level. 

Getting eye to eye invites the viewer into the subjects world

 

 The above photo is of my beautiful daughter. It was taken about 16 years ago (man, time flies). It’s a scan from an Ektachrome slide and has some technical flaws, but I love the image. When she was teething, she would really lay into this day crib. I’ll have more examples in future posts illustrating how getting to your subject’s level will, more often than not, improve your images.  

Try it yourself. Grab your camera, and if you have a kid or a pet nearby, photograph them while you’re standing up and looking down on them. Then, kneel or sit down and take an image eye to eye. Let me know which one you like better.  Jeff 

   


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