Creativity Challenge #3 - Minimalism

The third instalment of my 52-week Creativity Challenge - Minimalism

Minimalism refers to the technique of simplifying your composition by removing anything that distracts you from the main subject.

Ocean Grove Beach - Storms over the sea

The view east from the Ocean Grove lookout extends all the way to Point Lonsdale (9 km away) and beyond. This afternoon, there were rain storms being blown in from the sea towards Point Lonsdale so I chose this as the subject for this challenge.

In the first image, I took the classic scenic shot of the view east from the lookout. 

 ISO 100, 31mm, 1/6 second at f/22, no filters

ISO 100, 31mm, 1/6 second at f/22, no filters

A pretty enough shot but the real interest is the storm in the centre and it's too small at this wide angle. I zoomed in and reframed for a second shot.

 ISO 100, 63mm, 1/15 second at f/22, no filters

ISO 100, 63mm, 1/15 second at f/22, no filters

This image is more pleasing to me because it concentrates on the rain storm without the distractions of the beach or the dune vegetation.

The point of this exercise today, though, was 'minimalism'. Unfortunately, the rainstorm in the above too images, blew itself out after a few minutes but there was another following it in from the south west so I turned the camera out to sea and took a third shot.

 ISO 100, 27mm, 1/10 second at f/22, no filters

ISO 100, 27mm, 1/10 second at f/22, no filters

In this image, I have isolated the subject: the storm clouds over the sea but also kept just enough interest in the water with the lines of waves to make it interesting. 

I think I prefer the second image but there are no hard and fast rules for how far you go with techniques such as minimalism. However, the strategy of removing the distractions in an image and concentrating on the main subject is a powerful way to improve your compositions. 

Have fun trying this out.

In the following video from my YouTube Channel I talk through these images (sorry, no in the filed video recording today - it was rainy and windy and it was hard enough to shoot one-handed—holding an umbrella in the other hand—without trying to shoot video as well).

Please feel free to comment below. Constructive criticism and informed discussion are always welcome.

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