*****Challenge #230 - Breaking a Rule*****

Started Jul 13, 2016 | Discussions thread
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Bob in Baltimore
Bob in Baltimore Senior Member • Posts: 1,068
*****Challenge #230 - Breaking a Rule*****

This challenge is about breaking a rule. There are certain rules that we have learned, and if you have been engaged in judged completions you have probably heard more about them than you cared for. One such rule is that the photograph must draw you in, and should not have distracting image content. More than once, a judge has said, “I don’t know where to look” when commenting on my work. Another one is that the horizon should never lie near the center of the image. Others refer to using the “rule of thirds” for an ideal image. But if it is all about rules that must be followed, then it isn’t art. Indeed, the winning images in my camera club often break the rules.

I like an image that keeps your eyes moving about, finding new things and perhaps even conflicting elements. My image that Robert Sommers selected was actually part of a larger image, that, unless you knew the people, would leave you endlessly confused as to where your eyes should land. I submit the original image as my first example of breaking a rule. (Incidentally, the shot was made while I was setting up for a group shot, so everybody was a captive, but unaware that I was taking actual exposures. Some were lost in pain, others in reflection, and still others in idle chit chat. That is the story!)

After the Funeral - The Bigger Picture

A second example is this antique shop near St. Michael’s Maryland. My mentor’s critique on this was, “I don’t know where to look. There are at least a dozen compositions in this shot. Choose one.” I disagreed. I want your eyes to wonder all over the image, and never find a resting place.

Antique Shop in Oak Creek, MD

My third example is this bar in St Michael’s. There is no focus, You are to search about for new and amusing insights about this quirky place. (Make sure that you examine the poster just below the stag at some point.) I do feel that this image is compromised by another broken rule, the out of focus foreground, and the distracting black and white TV image.

Bar in St. Michael's, MD

So, show us a great image that breaks a traditional rule. Tell us what the rule is, and why you chose to ignore it. It need not be the lack of a focal topic, but I will give a bit more weight to images that do that, because I want to see how others successfully keep the eyes moving about. If it was in a competition and did poorly for breaking a rule, provide the judges quote for extra credit. Images will be judged on the quality of the image and on the degree to which the indicated rule was violated.

Photos taken since July 15, 2011 (five years ago) are eligible. They can be taken with any Nikon camera. Please rename the subject line with the title of your entry.


There are no restrictions on post processing.

The host chooses the winning image however your votes will weigh on my decision.

The winner chooses the next topic and runs the next challenge.

Feel free to comment (In a positive way... be polite) on the images.

Challenge ends 11:59 p.m., August 7, 2016 EDT.

Happy rule breaking!

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Bob in Baltimore

 Bob in Baltimore's gear list:Bob in Baltimore's gear list
Nikon D850 Nikon AF-S Nikkor 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6G VR Nikon AF-S Micro-Nikkor 105mm F2.8G IF-ED VR Nikon AF-S Nikkor 85mm F1.4G Nikon AF-S Nikkor 35mm f/1.4G +1 more
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