The Beauty of Balance

My previous post was all about Balance in composition, and how visual balance will help determine whether an image is perceived as being more stable & static or more dynamic & informal.

In response to my Challenge to share images that display a strong element of  Balance, I received two very compelling contributions –

Ed Spadoni of Ed Spadoni Photography and 2 Guys Photo, (an excellent Blog that I  highly recommend) sent this beautiful, symmetrical image of Hydrangea leaves, proving that Nature is an everlasting source of inspiration, perfection & balance….

Hydrangea Leaves

Nikon D90, 1/500 sec, f/6.3, focal length 24mm, ISO 200

Ed shares his thoughts on the shot:

“While vacationing recently on Cape Cod, I couldn’t help but notice the many beautiful flower beds that people were maintaining on their properties. When we were there, Hydrangeas of all colors were in full bloom and the subject of several captures. But I like to look for the not-so-obvious subjects when I’m out shooting, and these leaves from one of the Hydrangea plants caught my eye. Their color and the lighting was just right but the near-symmetry of the leaves is what really got me.”

The leaves are almost mirror images of each other and they create a wonderful impression of stability & harmony, bringing our eyes to rest quietly & peacefully in the centre of the image.

The second image was sent by Hershy at Harsh Javeri Photography. This shot is a fascinating study in Asymmetrical Balance & you can clearly see how appealing this strong composition can be….

Club Mahindra, Munnar
Club Mahindra, Munnar

Harsh’s thoughts on the shot:

“It was morning and was having my morning tea and taking pictures of the sunrise & the valley from our cottage. I had balanced the cup on the railing and when I came back for a sip, I noticed that the cup and the end part of the railing complimented each other in shape and colours. I also liked the textures on the railing and the reflections on the glass. I just adjusted the tea bag label a bit and liked the overall effect. That’s it, no elaborate set up for a ‘table-top’ picture, it just happened and luckily I noticed it”

I believe that one of the reasons that this image is so pleasing is because it is clearly balanced by the various elements of ‘visual weight’…. the greens & the curves are similar, but slightly different & the textures clearly contrast with each other. The tea bag ‘tag’ is of course, the perfect touch to create the dynamic tension of Asymmetrical balance.

Both images are superb examples of Balance as the predominant element of composition and yet they are so very different.

Thank you so much, Ed & Harsh for taking the time to contribute these wonderful images, I’m very grateful for your support & encouragement.

I’ll toss in one more image…..I shot this last fall & I think the predominant feeling is one of stability & structure, created by the similarity of the scenes on both sides of the strong lines in the centre, which makes it an example of Symmetrical/Static/Formal Balance….

Straight west
Due west, as the geese fly due south....

There are no time limits & no rules to my little Challenges, so if you have an image that you would like to share, please send your image to jbmcphoto@gmail.com

Share your thoughts if you care too…. would love to hear them…. 🙂

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Enjoying photography & blogging in my retirement.

2 thoughts on “The Beauty of Balance

  1. Many thanks, Ed… your kind words & support are so encouraging. I appreciate them both so very much as I try to figure out how to ride this roller coaster called ‘blogging’…. 🙂

  2. Hi Janet, thanks for including my “hydrangea leaves” in your post and thanks for the mention too. I enjoyed reading this post, along with your prior post on balance, both thoughtful essays on the subject. I think it’s interesting that Hershy and I shared not only the theme of balance but also did it in green! Keep up the great work on your blog, I look forward to your future work. Ed

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