I can’t help but post one more image from the sunset shoot that I photographed last week. In one of my earlier posts from that shoot, I mentioned that I wouldn’t have minded a wider focal length (~35mm) to get a little more of the beautiful sky into the frame. With this shot, though, I chose a composition that I felt worked really well with the 53mm focal length.
There are a lot of details in this scene that, while small and certainly secondary to the sky and water elements, I feel really add something to the image. These are the elements along the horizon: the birds (both in the water and taking flight on the left edge of the frame), the houses and their interior lights, the mountains, and the silhouettes of the trees. These elements are a bit small in the frame for my taste, but if I had shot this with a wider focal length they would become so small they’d virtually disappear.
I really feel like the 53mm focal length is a great happy medium for this scene: it forcibly emphasizes the sky and then the water, but it also includes just enough of those elements mentioned above to make them an additive factor without detracting from the primary elements. If I hadn’t been restricted to using a single lens during this shoot, my shoot probably would have consisted of wide angle shots and telephoto shots. I probably wouldn’t have even touched something in the 50mm focal length range, and I would have totally missed this shot as a result. I’m sure I would have come up with some very enjoyable shots with that approach, but I’m very happy that I did this shoot with a single lens. It was a great lesson in adapting your vision to the gear that’s available to you.
When I was first starting off in photography, I’d have an image in my mind and then I’d often get disappointed when my equipment either let me down or my inability to use my equipment let me down. This project is teaching me to, when I hit those sticking points, adapt the image in my mind and still come away with a “successful” image.