07 August, 2014

Train Your Eyes for Minimalist Photography

Let's say you have decided to give Minimalist Photography a try and you are keen on clicking some Minimalist Photos. The question is where to begin? 

To begin,

You need to train your eyes to see shapes. 

You need to change your "perspective" i.e. the way you look at things. 

Shapes/lines/ geometry is everywhere. They are a part of our everyday lives, but we often forget to notice them.

For example:

  • What shape is a birthday cake? Isn't it mostly a square or a circle?
  • Even when you cut your birthday cake with a knife, what shape do you cut out ? Don't you cut out triangles ?
  • Geometry is everywhere. OK, how about a wrist watch? The most common dial shapes are circular, square, or rectangular.
  • How about the plates we use to eat our food in? again circular or square. (the common ones)
  • How about  doors and windows? Mostly all doors are rectangular (rather rectangles) and most common window shapes are improvised squares or rectangles. Rectangles, are used the most in everyday life, they are just about everywhere.
  • Also, how about the electricity wires you see on the road attached to the poles. Well, those are not electricity wires, for a minimalist those are Lines.

This is the kind of perspective change you need to bring in, in order to compose Minimalist frames.

Let's take a few photo examples, to better understand how a normal person views objects and how a minimalist views them. 

Example 1) 

A Minimalist Photo of Rusty circles in a worn out metal sheet.
Photo by © Prakash Ghai
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a) How a Normal person views it: Two holes in a rusty metal sheet.
b) How a Minimalist views it: Two circles separated by a line.

Example 2) 

A Minimalist Photo of Yellow wall with a sqaure opening
Photo by © Prakash Ghai
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a) How a Normal person views it: A yellow wall with an opening.
b) How a Minimalist views it: A red rectangle within a square, which is again within a larger square.

Example 3) 

A Minimalist Photo of lines created by a wooden Ladder against a textured wall.
Photo by © Prakash Ghai
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a) How a Normal person views it: Snippet of a ladder .
b) How a Minimalist views it: Five vertical lines cut by a diagonal one.

Example 4) 

A Black and white Minimalist Photo of Broken windows at Diggi Palace Jaipur
Photo by © Prakash Ghai
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a) How a Normal person views it: Six windows .
b) How a Minimalist views it: Rectangles, squares, lines and curves.

Example 5) 

A Black and white Minimalist Photo of the Tyre of a Bicycle parked against a wall and a rectangle on the bottom right.
Photo by © Prakash Ghai
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a) How a normal person views it: A bicycle parked by the wall.
b) How a Minimalist views it: A semi-circle, lines and a rectangle.

Example 6) 

A Minimalist Photo of A yellow Staircase at Jantar Mantar Jaipur
Photo by © Prakash Ghai
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a) How a normal person views it: A staircase.
b) How a Minimalist views it: A right angled triangle on the left, A diagonal lines. other straight lines.

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I hope the above examples help. Also see: Types of Minimalism

More Articles on Minimalist Photography

Feel free to share your photos in the comments section and leave a feedback for the article.

Thank you, have a nice day/night.


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  4. Very Helpful. Thank you

  5. Your site is very helpful indeed! I do love minimalist photography since I'm constantly looking for geometry and shapes but I also need to be more serious about it and define myself.

  6. This is great and will be helpful as I try to begin photographing minimalist pics! Love your Instagram feed...so inspiring!

  7. Good post.. happy I learnt some thing new today!

  8. Amazing & Interesting, Today I learnt something new that is how to train your eyes for minimalist.