If there is one tendency that I try to break, it’s to shoot subjects head-on. I don’t know what it is – maybe it’s my affinity for architecture – but I always default to setting my camera so that it’s facing directly straight to whatever I’m about to shoot. And, in some cases, that is the appropriate framing choice.

But, I find that, more often than not, shooting subjects at an angle can offer a very dramatic and visually pleasing alternative for the viewer. In the case with this image, my attention was originally grabbed by this bus in the foreground, with its windshield missing. It goes without saying that it has a lot of character. But then, I was attracted to the bus next to it, with its arching overhang. And then the yellow bus beyond it. You get my drift.

So, by setting my tripod on an angle, I was able to retain all of the elements of the first bus while also including other attractive elements. And, I’d wager that the image is more compelling as a whole because of this angle. So, when you’re out shooting, take an extra minute or two and navigate around whatever it is you’re shooting. It’ll likely pay off.

Google Maps Location Info
39.1560, -122.1476

In terms of processing
This is a seven exposure tone-mapped #HDR  image, processed in Photomatix Pro. Because of the drastic tonal range in the scene, tone-mapping was critical.

As far as stylization, I wanted to change the tone of the warm sunlight and was able to achieve that with Urban Sickness. Next, I added some Havana to the yellow bus in the background, as well as Green Enhancer to the weeds in the foreground. Tonal Contrast was masked in on all of the buses. All done in Perfect Effects 3 by +onOne Software.

Final touches were applied in Lightroom 4.1.

In album UrbEx and RuralEx (1 photo)

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