In photography, there are many things that help play a key role to determine how good or how great your image is. Two of these key things are your perspective and your composition. As I have said many times before, the composition or perspective of your image can help to make it better or break it into something you are not particularly proud of. In this article, we will be talking a little about a mixture of both in regards to shooting at a low angle. To some of you, this may sound weird but I do encourage you to give it a try first. As photographers, we’ve easily fallen into a habit of shooting the subject at our eye level or just bending our knees a little bit to get low. In my case, I have to bend my knees very often due to my height. It’s safe to say being 6’4 has its pros and cons as well. However, have you ever thought of maybe getting a little bit lower and aiming upwards or simply capturing shots from a very low angle? If not, here are some simple tips and advantages of capturing a subject from a low angle.
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At some point, images can become very predictable or rather boring to viewers if there is no change in perspective or composition. Shooting from a low angle will help to bring forth some of the diversity needed in an album or if you’re working on your portfolio. This will show that you are capable of doing whatever is needed to make sure you capture the most interesting angle of your subject. It will also help to keep your viewers wondering as to how you even got that shot. Just like macro photography, there are often very interesting things to capture that are not at your eye level.
Many subjects are interesting without having to put much effort into making them look interesting but what if you tried? Shooting subjects from a lower angle sometimes easily help to make them look even twice as interesting than they already were. This is how perspective and composition can help to shape your subject into something else within your frame that helps to make them that much more appealing.
Remember as a child, you would have to look up at everything that was bigger than you.
This was usually almost everything in your household or everyone when you went out with your parents or parent but nonetheless, your eyes glistened with interest. Everything looked so big and interesting that you either wanted to touch or just learn more about it. That same feeling of interest can be recreated by simply getting a little lower and aiming up to your subject.
Getting low can often help to provide you with a more visually pleasing or better background for your subject. Many times I have run into the issue where my subject is perfect where it is but for some reason my background is giving me a problem. When this happens, I make it a habit to get a little lower and see how my background plays out from a different perspective. It usually helps very well depending on the setting your in or the subject you’re shooting.
Getting low can particularly help in street photography with those busy backgrounds especially in the city. Use the towering buildings to your advantage to help steer focus on your subject and keep your background interesting but not too interesting to distract the viewer from your subject.
Shooting from a low angle also helps to evoke a very heroic or superior look on your subject. This is often used by sports photographers, more popularly in basketball. If you take a look at the position of most photographers during a basketball game they’re either sitting on the floor or laying on their stomachs to get their shot. This is because they want their subject to look superior or heroic as well to get more details to make their shots more interesting. Photographers in Soccer do this as well and across most sports, you will find that this habit, in particular, is pretty common.
Low Angles in photography usually enable you to use lines in the composition of your image. Using lines in photography is a very powerful technique in composition and can actually help your image to stand out a lot more. There is something visually appealing about capturing lines parallel to each other in a frame that can easily be achieved by just getting a little lower than usual.
It’s been a huge pleasure sharing with you how low angle photography can benefit you as a photographer and add more diversity to your work. It is always a pleasure sharing these useful tips with you and I look forward to doing so again.