10 Smartphone Photos That Frame Their Subjects Beautifully

Monday

The theme for this weeks showcase of mobile photography looks at 10 photos that frame their subjects in one way or another. Using framing is a technique which allows you to draw the viewers eye towards the intended subject and give them more focus.

From Paul Yan’s use of a coloured doorway to frame his subject and give the photo depth to Alan Kastner’s use of lines, shape and shadows to frame a solitary figure. All photos this week illustrate how effective this technique can be and how you can use doorways, windows, shafts of light, stairways and more to frame the subject of a photo.

Featured photographers this week include: Arpixa, Paul Yan, Autul, Harry Bosch, Kimboid, Max Waltzer, Michael Young, Tricia Darling, and Alan Kastner.

Do you have a favourite photo from this week’s showcase? Let us know which in the comments section at the bottom of the page. Finally, hashtag your photos with #mobiography for a chance of getting featured in future showcases.

Shine bright like a diamond

Shine bright like a diamond‘ by Tricia Darling – “I had just bought lunch at the IFC Mall and I was heading home.  As I was leaving, I noticed how intense the sun was (IFC has some square glass windows on the roof) and then saw the bright squares shining down on the white floor of the mall.  I instantly changed direction and went up a level on the escalator so I could look down and compose a good shot, but I didn’t go up too high as I still wanted to capture detail. I used my iPhone 6 plus to photograph this woman walking through the centre of the light, and I was pleased that you could see little details, like her phone and the pink wallet in her hand. I felt this added another interesting layer to the story.  As it was lunch time and very busy I did have to wait some time for someone to walk through the light alone and with good spacing, as most people were walking in lines or groups.

I edited the image in VSCO just to increase the contrast of the shadows.  I was conscious of not adjusting it too much as I still wanted the other people around her to be seen and obviously the mall itself could not look too dark as it was midday. I also like that everyone is mid-step and on their phone while walking. I also straightened the image so that the white line on the right was perfectly parallel.”

Basuke’s Blues

Basuke’s Blues‘ by Alan Kastner – “For me, this photo was all about the subject – from the distinctive retro styling of his fashion, to his peppy walk and hint of a smile. As such, I was interested in focusing on him and him alone. That called for a backdrop that didn’t distract from the subject, but hopefully did frame him well and highlight his position on ‘centre stage’.

This fellow’s “wayō settchū” (“Japanese-Western compromise”, or “semi-Western”) attire speaks back to a design and styling trend that dates to the late 19th and early 20th century; one that produced some of Japanese finest examples of early modern architecture, and also gave birth to a variety of interesting fashion trends. Our subject combines a kimono (likely with a western-style white shirt under it) with leather boots and a fedora. It’s a sort of nostalgic journey back to a fashionable period of history,  while it also reflects the recent resurgence of this style among certain groups of creative young Japanese folk. To my eye, the modern bag he carries adds a touch by bringing that century-old fashion into our time period.

I shot this photo at Yanaka Reien, a huge non-denominational cemetery in an old part of Tokyo that is famous for the row of cherry trees that line its wide thoroughfare. It’s a popular destination for those walking the neighbourhood, but is also the resting place of a variety of artists, scholars, politicians, etc. who were prominent in the late 19th and early 20th century. It also happens to be the burial place of Tokugawa Yoshinobu, the last Shōgun.

Processing included the elimination of any distracting elements in the background, converting the photo to B&W, and adjusting the light some to further highlight the subject.”

Missing You Already

Missing You Already‘ by Paul Yan – “Having participated and lecturing at the 8 X 8 Street Photography Workshop/Exhibition/Event conducted by Monogram Asia in Bangkok on April 29 and 30 (http://www.monogramasia.com/8×8-in-review/), I stayed in Bangkok for a few days of vacation and street photography sprees. I went roaming in Bangkok’s 100-year old Hua Lamphong Train Station (Bangkok Railway Station) for the first time one morning. Hopped on and took a walk in a parked train with sporadic passengers in it waiting for departure. While I was about to enter another train, this woman on a bench whose dignity and serenity made me quickly compose a portrait of her with the ProCamera app, using the door planks as partial frame. It was a spur-of-the moment thing that lasted for a few seconds but I have a vivid memory of being mesmerized by her aged beauty accented by the side light.

Post-processing was done in Snapseed using [Face Enhance] to lighten up the dark side of the woman’s face, and [Selective] to locally lighten up the floor while darkening the shadows on it. The image was then cropped to 5:4 aspect ratio to slightly cut off the very top and bottom edges of the image.”

Pressure

Pressure‘ by Kimboid – “I have an absolute fascination when it comes to taking photos of commuters on trains, it allows small discoveries of the mundane that normally go unnoticed, but are a wonderful representation of what is currently happening within our society. I am constantly striving to discover subjective creations that induce thought and self-reflection so that each viewer can take away a different story and meaning driven by their own mood, and their own current struggles.

The cinematic nature of a frame within the confines of the image’s border, enhances the dramatic nature of a single subject, it provides focus and an anchor point to the composition. This gentleman caught my eye as his expression has such intensity that you can see every difficult decision he has made, every worry, and every step he has made to discover his own originality throughout his life. It is powerful, and it is a reminder to keep taking our own steps to get where we want to be, no matter how small they maybe some days.

For this image, I used Snapseed to complete the post processing, it is a tool that I enjoy using as it gives you complete control over the final product. It gives you permission to experiment and stretch and in some case completely ignore the “rules” of photography, and that freedom allows you to find a place for your own style. “

Trifecta. Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore, Maryland

Trifecta. Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore, Maryland‘ by Lloyd Fox

Contemplating white

contemplating white‘ by Arpixa – “I shot this photo at the Hirshhorn museum during the exhibition of the legendary works of Yayoi Kusama. I am drawn to taking photographs of people interacting with and observing works of art. I try to capture the connection between the viewer and the art and thus the photograph itself becomes an expression of what the artist may have wanted to convey. I often photograph my little son’s silhouette which makes the photo more personal for me and embodies a moment that I want to preserve. Here I was attracted to the almost white textured painting on a white wall, with which my son’s silhouette contrasted beautifully and seems to evoke a sense of having entered the world framed within that painting.

I took the photo with an iPhone 6s with which I have been shooting extensively. I used Instagram for cropping it square, converting it to black and white using the Inkwell filter with a minor increase in contrast to emphasize the stark lines and curves. “

Lost in own world

Lost in own world‘ by Autul

Untitled

Untitled‘ by Harry Bosch

One step at a time

One step at a time‘ by Max Waltzer

Naturally Curly Girl Running the Train

Naturally Curly Girl Running the Train‘ by Michael Young

Do You Have a Favourite?

Do you have a favourite from this weeks showcase? Let us know your thoughts on the featured photos in the comments below.

If you haven’t already done so, follow Mobiography on Instagram and hashtag your photos with#mobiography for a chance of getting featured in future showcases. Don’t forget to sign up to the Mobiography email list to get the latest news and updates direct to your inbox.

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