Saturday, 23 July 2011

Assignment 3: Colour: Summary and Conclusion

What did I learn from this module and  assignment?

I was able to identify and demonstrate the use of different colours in various deliberate relationships. From my experience of building  a library of colours I have been able to more easily slot varying hues into their place in the colour  circle. Fortunately the assignment has been completed at a time of year when colour is abundant in the landscape giving me the opportunity to see and use many natural colours. I have learned that pure colours rarely occur in nature and when they do, the interplay of sunlight, shadow, cloud and other colours in close proximity can effect their tone and hue. I have also experimented with the use of exposure compensation, both positive and negative on the strength of colours.

Comments on Tutor Feedback:
I was gratified to read;  "You are well on the way and learning all the time."
Following generally positive feedback from my tutor I replied with these comments:

"I’m afraid I do tend to focus too narrowly on the brief, even though I allowed myself plenty of time to choose my range of subjects. I am pleased that you liked my abstracts, I took a chance and it seems to have paid off. Again your comment about anchoring them to the frame is noted. I have spent  time reading  some of the threads on the OCA forum and looking at the work other photographer’s over the past weeks, searching for ideas and inspiration.  I hope you’ll be getting more original/individual work for assignment 4."

Assignment 3: Colour: Urban/Man Made - Harmonious and Contrasting Colours

For the final four images I chose to look at the Urban/Man Made envvironment.

Urban/Man Made - Harmony - Complementary Colours

The first image is of an apartment block, taken in Portsmouth and is part of the redevelopment of the old Naval dockyard at Gun Wharf.

7072: 1/350s f5.6 90mm

Colour Details: This image is so clear that a colour sketch wouldn't add anything. This is closely framed to achieve the 1:2 orange:blue ratio which appears nicely balanced. Vertical framing and diagonal lines from the perspective give movement up the orange coloum and then follow the diagonals to the right.

Urban/Man Made - Harmony - Similar Colours

7124: 1/500s f5.6 60mm

I  photographed this in the Market town of Alton which has a lot of red and yellow brick Victorian buildings but was pleased to find this freshly painted lilac and blue cottage to give me a cooler colour example for the assignment. I had to tidy up the image a bit and eventually decided on a landscape crop to remove the roof and upper window.

Colour Detail: All of the colours highlighted are cool (i.e. in the blue section of  the colour circle) The cobbled path forms a horizontal base, the verticals of the door and window frames give upward movement and the three different wall  retaining plates give interest and movement left to right, leading the eye to the window

Urban/Man Made - Contrast - Different Colours
This yellow painted house contrasts strongly with the blue sky. This is a good example of primary colour contrast.

6793: 1/350s f9.5 18mm

Colour Details With a luminosity of 9, yellow is more than twice that of blue which is 4. However, when making this diagram I realised  that the luminosity varies with the tone; i.e.the yellow wall in shadow is much less luminous than the wall in full sunlight.

Urban/Man Made - Contrast - Colour Accent
Very close to the apartment block in  the first image and part of the old Naval dockyard, is an old brick wall which has been preserved as part of  the Ferry Terminal. These coloured bricks are arranged in a simple diamond pattern. I have cropped the image to isolate the blue/grey brick as a colour accent.

7071: 1/350s f5.6 56mm

Colour Details: The accent here is that of the cool coloured brick contrasting the warm colours of the red and yellow bricks. There is movement across the frame diagonally which changes direction at the apex of an implied triangle. There is visual tension from the colour accent and the unfinished triangle outside of the frame. I have simplified the colour accent in the diagram.

Saturday, 16 July 2011

Assignment 3: Colour: Abstract - Harmonious and Contrasting Colours

In an attempt to introduce some originality into my work, I have included four abstract images to illustrate the four types of colour relationships required for the assignment. Here is the first:

Abstract - Harmony - Complementary Colours

7044: 1/2000s f5.6 200mm

Colour Details: The red and green in the image are in approximately equal proportions to give a harmonious balance in terms of their relative luminousity. I cropped the image slightly, just to reduce the area of red. There is movement from the diagonal checkerplate and the two triangular sections bring the eye to the corners although the red triangle will always dominate.

Abstract - Harmony - Similar Colours
The second image shows a peculiar effect. These limestone pebbles in an alpine stream have this golden colour when submerged, despite the water being perfectly clear. I was attracted by the interplay of light at the surface.

6700: 1/200s f5.6 150mm

Colour Details: Once again I have exaggerated the hues and tones for effect. The compositional elements here are basically a repeating pattern with the centre ground coming in and out of focus and the top and bottom of the frame.

Abstract - Contrast - Different Colours

This next image was originally in landscape orientation but I decided it would have more impact turned through 90°. It is the transom on a fishing boat, partially repainted.

7054: 1/750s f5.6 200mm

Colour Details: This image contains all of the primary colours, dominated by red in area but yellow in luminosity. There is an imbalance here which provides the contrast. Movement across the frame is provided by the diagonal contrast between the red and yellow.

Abstract - Contrast - Colour Accent

This final abstract image is of the reflections in the Emerald Lakes at Kranjska Gora with a red colour accent.

6806:  1/750s f5.6 200mm

Colour Detail: I need to do no more than emphasise the red accent on the image. The compositional elements include a lighter toned band at the base of the frame, tonal contrast and vertical reflections if the trees on the shore of the lake. I tried several different shots and this was the best. The slight breeze on the water has blended the varying tones of the reflections which looks more interesting than a mirror like surface.

Thursday, 14 July 2011

Assignment 3: Colour: Landscape/Nature: Colour Accent

I took this dramatic landscape with a compact camera on a tough mountain walk over scree to the summits of Mala Mostrovka and Velica Mostrovka above the Vrsic pass in Slovenia.

011: exposure information unavailable

Colour Details: Although the area of red is very small in the frame, the contrast is enough to separate and identify the climbers against the cool background colour. The overwhelming compositional element  is the diagonal of the difference in tone emphasising the incline. The implied movement of the climbers is upwards. Even though I zoomed in on the climbers, the massive scale of the landscape is unmistakeable.

Wednesday, 13 July 2011

Assignment 3: Colour: Landscape/Nature: Colour Contrast - Different Colours

I haven't yet been able to indentify this alpine flower photographed on the Vitranc ridge in Slovenia. The contrast of these two secondaries, green and violet, works well in this image.

6670: 1/90s f5 75mm, aperture priority mode.

Colour Details: Although the relative luminance of green (6) and violet (3) mean that the flower is only just brighter than the background, it stands out well and is after all in its natural surroundings. I chose to place the bloom off centre. The bud was out of focus anyway and recedes naturally. There is tension here as the bud does not balance the bloom. The verticals, curves and diagonals of the stem and blades of grass give movement in the bottom half of the frame. The implied triangle shape of the bloom itself provides a focus in the left half of the frame.

Assignment 3: Colour: Landscape/Nature: Colour Harmony – Similar Colours

This is one of several landscapes I took at the Emerald Lakes in Kranjska Gora. All of the tones are from the yellow/green segment of the colour circle. The lakes are very shallow, the water is crystal clear; what you see on the surface is a fusion of the the reflected light from the surroundings and what is on the lake bed. The image works better if seen larger on the screen. Click the image to see a larger version in a new window.

6828: 1/750s f6.7 105mm programme auto.

Colour Detail: My initial thought was that that a colour diagram for this image  wouldn't achieve much as the hues are within a narrow range of the colour circle. However when I started, I broke the area down into a couple of hues and several exaggerated  tones within each. The result tends to reinforce the abstract nature of the image. The composition has horizontal, vertical and diagonal elements in the banded tones and the vertical reeds. There is also visual contrast in the sharp focus on the reeds, the soft focus of the reflected trees and the light and dark tones in the reflections in the top half of the frame.

This second image for colour harmony was again taken in the Julian Alps. I have exaggerated the saturation and contrast a little to emphasise the blue tones and the layered effect from the perspective. Click on the image to see a larger version an a new window.

6894: 1/1500s f9.5 65mm, programme auto

Colour Diagram: I don't really think this image needs any annotation, the colours are quite distinct. The elements of composition include dark horizontal bands to provide a base, shallow diagonals and several triangles. The image appears to be in slight imbalance with the darker tones shifted to the right,giving movement from bottom right to mid left and back diagonally to top right emphasising the peak on the left and those in the distance.

Tuesday, 12 July 2011

Assignment 3: Colour: Landscape/Nature: Colour Harmony – Complimentary Colours

I searched my recent archive for this image of a small seaside town on the north coast of Madiera. I wanted a landscape showing the complimentary colours blue and orange and chose this as an alternative to a sunset. The high viewpoint has saturated  the colour of the sea, matching the intensity of the orange tiled roofs.

2832: 1/1000s f8 82mm, programme mode

Colour Details: The colour elements of this composition are balanced; i.e the proportions are approximately 1 orange:2 blue. The two diagonals, the church roof and the row of houses give a left right movement  bottom right to top right and the offset church tower gives some tension, balanced by the length of the church roof.

Assignment 3: Colour: Still Life: Colour Contrast – Colour Accent

This was a grab shot I took in a restaurant in Slovenia. It shows colour accent perfectly with the warm colours of the roses contrasting against the grey background.

6861: 1/90s f5.6 170mm programmed auto mode.

Colour Details: All of these colours accent against the grey background. As they have high luminance (yellow 9, red and green 6) even a small area contrasts against the neutral background. The composition has horzontal and diagonal lines, a triangle between the the three blooms several points placed off centre to give movement and emphasise the foreground.

Sunday, 10 July 2011

Assignment 3: Colour: Still Life: Colour Contrast – Different Colours

For this example I have chosen to contrast blue (cool) and yellow (warm) with these glass bottles filled with diluted food colour. The bottles were photographed on a sunlit window sill. I also made photographs with flash but I found that the plain background meant that there wasn't the variety of refracted and reflected shapes and tones that I got from the scene outside
7008: 1/60s f5.6 200mm, aperture priority

Colour details: I made several crops of the image but chose this one to increase the proportion of the yellow/orange which increases the contrast due to its relative brightness. The crest moulded into the bottle is emphasised by the circle and forms a focal point. Although the image has strong verticals, the curved shoulders of the bottle and the rounded refraction of the bottom edge of the the window pane, carries the eye across the frame.