The Learning Log of An OCA Photography Student

EXERCISE – Horizontal and Vertical Lines

This exercise required me to take eight photographs showing four examples of horizontal lines and four examples of vertical lines. Each should as far as possible avoid repeating the way in which a line appears in the image.

Horizontal Lines

IMG_9389The firs image In this image the bridge and the passing train form a horizontal line across the image.

IMG_9389 LineAs you can see the line bisects the image across the upper third line, compositionally this draws the eye up. The road and the cars lead into the train and the bridge also drawing the eye into the train. The other thing that draws the eye is the bright yellow of the ambulance, this could have been distracting except that it appears directly under the cab of the train, all of which move the viewers eye in to the right place. It may be that the picture could have been stronger if the ambulance were less bright. However the end result does work even with the ambulance in place, I think that the composition may have been ruined if the shutter had operated seconds later and the ambulance had moved further along the road.

IMG_9878-EditThe horizon line provides a horizontal break across the image.

IMG_9878-Edit LineThe bush line is lighter than both the foreground grass and the tree line and provides a break that draws the eye into the ruins. This horizon line breaks the picture in two equally which is not conventional wisdom in composition. The ruins add weight to the upper half of the image. The composition is not perfect on this image but it does demonstrate a line bisecting the image.

IMG_1139This image of the silk reels waiting to be woven into silk cloth at the silk mill in Whitechurch, demonstrates horizontal lines formed by the rows of silk reels.

IMG_1139 LineWhere a there is a row of objects all at the same distance they can form a line in this case the reels on the rack are all stored in neat rows ready to be connected to the loom. These rows of reels form a horizontal line across the picture, the lines are almost diagonal due to the position used to shoot the image, a small amount of correction was done in Photoshop to align the image but this would have been much better if I had been allowed to get into a position square with the image. However I do think that this demonstrates the principle of forming a line with multiple objects and so it earns its place in the exercise.


IMG_0193 Line In this image of my Daughters Prom Night, the five girls form a horizontal line with their eyes. This is similar to the cotton reels where a number of objects create the line by their placement at a constant distance from the camera.

Vertical Lines


IMG_8922-1 LineThis fence panel forms a series of vertical lines the edges of the planks and the gaps between both add to the image of a series of vertical lines.


IMG_0576 Line

In this image of the water fountain taken at Birdworld the torrent of water caught with a slow shutter speed forms a vertical line in the image, the heavy blurred water spout is balanced by negative space on the right of the image giving a classic rule of thirds composition


IMG_9992-2 Line

The Guitar forms a semi symmetrical image that creates a vertical line through the center of the image. The dark color of the neck highlighted by the bright strings and fret marks serve to draw the eye into the center of the image. the bright colors of the guitar body also serve to mark the guitar as the subject of the image.


IMG_0230 Line

The streets of Farnham make a good setting for the last example of a vertical line this view of the Lion and Lamb walk provides a vertical line in the form of the side of the buildings and the path running away from the cameras view. I liked the fact that the line here is more subtle.

2 Responses to “EXERCISE – Horizontal and Vertical Lines”

  1. Catherine

    Good to see you back and looking forward to meeting you at the TV group in April. The prom shot is good – fancy them all being of similar height as well!

  2. stephenbarney

    I have been busy never stopped working on the degree just been abroad a bit for work I have a ton of work I have doe that I now have to get put on the blogg, I am really looking foreward to the TV group too its a double bonus as Sharon is my Tutor so looking forward to her coments and insights it should be a really good day. That prom photo was a gift I was browsing the catalogue and whilest not the best photo from the prom it was perfect for the horizontal line so I was pleased with it. I am sort of surprised they are all the same hight I dont really recall that being the case maybe they all have their shoes set to a particular height you know young girls


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