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Horizontal or Vertical

Anyone who's ever held a 35mm camera knows that the "normal" orientation when you look through the viewfinder is horizontal or "landscape" mode. This doesn't mean, however, that you can't turn the camera on its side and shoot in a vertical or "portrait" mode. Many users fall into the habit of shooting almost everything in the horizontal format because it seems easier.

Vertical or "Portrait" modeHorizontal or "Landscape" modeSo, which is better, horizontal or vertical? Well, of course, the answer is neither. Some subjects lend themselves more to one than the other, but it's you that gets to decide, not your subject. Many times you can end up with different, but perfectly valid photos by shooting the same subject in both formats.

Now for a little exercise for our home viewers. Go through a couple of typical rolls of your work and add up how many of each format you ended up with. Doing so with the images I have posted in the portfolio shows that I have 53 percent vertical and 47 percent horizontal. Not bad. If your average is too far off from fifty-fifty you are favoring one format or the other. Not necessarily a problem, but something to think about.

Date posted: June 16, 2002


Copyright © 2002 Bob Johnson, Earthbound Light - all rights reserved.
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