The Dutch angle
Straight out of 20th century cinema, tilting the camera strongly to one side has an occasional place in the repertoire of camera angles, but tends to arouse fairly strong opinions for and against. Called the Dutch angle in the movies (actually from Deutsch, referring to its first use in German Expressionistic cinema), the main purpose of the angle is to introduce a sense of unease in the audience, as in film noir movies such as The Third Man.
It works slightly less aggressively in still photography, but even so the tilt needs to be quite strong in order to make it look intentional rather than just sloppy. You really should have a reason to use it, which may be graphic (to make something align), to make the scene fit or – better still – to convey a mood.
Both Robert Frank and Garry Winogrand used it for its disjointed effect. The shot below, of a typically drunken Friday night on the Tokyo subway, seemed to call for the effect, and there is an alignment (as the illustration shows). Martin Scorsese wrote of The Third
Man: “There’s this extraordinary sense of a world that’s come apart, accentuated by the off-centred cameras, the canted angles.”
Tilting the camera underlines the typical aftermath of after-work drinking in Tokyo, and also solves the problem of empty floor space by lining up feet and briefcase with the lower edge of the frame.