Shooting from different angles allows you to create something a bit different, something with a different perspective to how the viewer of your image might normally see the world.
We’ll start by the standard “hand held at eye level” height. If I take a photo of Marc using the same eye level as him, it gives a fairly flat, neutral look. There’s nothing wrong with this point of view at all. However, if I change the angle I shoot him I can really change the feel of the portrait.
I’m using an X-T1 camera which comes with a handy pull-out tilting screen. If I angle the screen down, I can shoot Marc from above. This can be quite a flattering angle ( in his case though with that expression… I’m not so sure ;-) ) when one looks upwards towards the camera. Equally, if I pull the screen out I can angle the camera low and shoot up towards him. As you can see, this makes him look more powerful and authoritive and with a little bit of Dutch tilt, almost epic!
And it’s not only portraits where this works.
See the difference between a “high”, “standard” and a “low” shot of something like a car. The low shot definitely gives a far more epic feel, whereas the high shot has that Autotrader look about it.
For shooting landscapes, going low removes the “middle ground”. The “Mid” and “High” shots below show the same scene taken at different heights. They both contain the foreground and background elements, but if you decide that the middle area is dull, you can go lower (as in the “Mid” shot) and effectively remove it from your shot.
And also, if the foreground is something small like a flower, mushrooms or even a bit of dog-chewed wood, getting low allows you to bring them in to be the real focus of the image, rather than just a minor element of the shot.
Hopefully that’s given you a bit of inspiration to go out and try shooting from down low, or up high and see how you can affect your images.
Until next time.. Happy Snapping!