Tip of the Day: Nature By Design

Nature is full of patterns and textures on all scales. Find them as you explore the world with your camera. Line direction equals mood: Vertical lines emphasize power, horizontal lines suggest serenity, and diagonal lines can be dynamic. Tree trunks, sand dunes, icicles, and the patchworks of farmland as viewed from a plane all offer interesting patterns. They can be the entire image or can offer leading lines to the main subject. An interrupting element boosts the power of the pattern.

Nature is full of patterns and textures on all scales. Find them as you explore the world with your camera.

Line direction equals mood: Vertical lines emphasize power, horizontal lines suggest serenity, and diagonal lines can be dynamic. Tree trunks, sand dunes, icicles, and the patchworks of farmland as viewed from a plane all offer interesting patterns. They can be the entire image or can offer leading lines to the main subject.

** An interrupting element boosts the power of the pattern.** For example, a rock protruding from ripples in the water or a tree of a different color from its surroundings.
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A long lens compresses distance between objects.** A wide-angle lens at a low viewing angle makes the foreground elements appear of grand scale.

Adapted from The Ultimate Field Guide to Landscape Photography by Robert Caputo (National Geographic, 2007; $22).