Cap­ture peo­ple on the move in Ox­ford

Digital Camera World - - SHOOTOUT - Chal­lenge 1 Ash Wroughton

The day se­lected for this month’s Shootout co­in­cided with the start of the aca­demic year, and the ar­rival of the new in­take of stu­dents at Ox­ford Univer­sity. The over­whelm­ing num­ber of par­ents nav­i­gat­ing their way through the city’s lanes in their lug­gage-laden cars made it more chal­leng­ing than nor­mal to pick out clean shots of in­ter­est­ing in­di­vid­u­als on the streets – but at least there was no short­age of sub­jects. The hus­tle and bus­tle also suited our first Shootout chal­lenge – to cap­ture peo­ple on the move.

“As we were in Ox­ford, I al­most felt obliged to cap­ture a cy­clist one way or an­other,” Ash ad­mits. “I de­cided to look for a kerb that had a dark shadow, to help dis­tin­guish be­tween the pave­ment and the road.

“It was a bright day, so there was plenty of light avail­able for fast, ac­tion-stop­ping shut­ter speeds, but I chose to use a slightly slower ex­po­sure, to cap­ture the mo­tion in a more in­ter­est­ing way. The el­e­ment of blur on the cy­clist here gives a bet­ter im­pres­sion of speed.”

Ex­pert opin­ion

Ash’s black-and-white treat­ment re­moves po­ten­tially dis­tract­ing colours and helps fo­cus the viewer’s at­ten­tion on the mo­tion in the frame. The im­age re­ally does have a lovely sense of speed – even though the sub­ject may not have been cy­cling par­tic­u­larly fast – and the di­ag­o­nal line adds to the dy­namic qual­ity too.

There is an ar­gu­ment to be made that plac­ing the sub­ject in the mid­dle of the pic­ture robs the im­age of a lit­tle en­ergy – but they are, at least, fol­low­ing that di­ag­o­nal across the frame.

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