Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Size & Orientation

I'm not quite ready to show what I worked on today, so instead I thought I'd revisit an observation I made in this post about how the dimensions of a piece of art can effect its impact. The picture above is another one of my "point and shoot on the fly" pictures snapped while driving through the Palouse. There was no framing of the shot and it is in its original digital ratio.

Here's the same picture cropped in a more radical landscape orientation.

And here it is again, cropped in a rather radical portrait orientation.

Were I to render this scene, I would be tempted to use the portrait orientation to accentuate the upthrust of the tall barn. Yet when I was cropping, it seemed more logical to go with the landscape that would stretch out the area surrounding the barn, playing into more of a feeling of isolation. I also liked the inclusion of the two slightly slanted fence posts. Which way would you go and why?

made this comment: "Apart from where there are specific challenge limitations ( eg 12 x 12 inch square for Journal quilt), 9/10 of my quilts and paintings are 'portrait 'orientation.I'm just coming to realize that I find myself unconsciously looking for inspiration that will fit that format rather than working out what's the best format for a scene."

I think one may be predisposed to feel more comfortable with one orientation over another. The first year I did journal quilts, I purposely chose to do them in landscape because so much of what I was thinking about could easily be rendered in that orientation. But every now and then, there'd be an idea that simply didn't work in that format. The next year I did them, I opted for portrait, and again, found there were times that conforming to that orientation for some designs was a challenge.

In my normal designing, I don't usually start with a size or orientation. I start with a concept and see where it goes. I've designed several quilts in portrait orientation only to discover upon completion they looked better in landscape, like "Something Bold." Just when I think landscape is my preferred orientation, I find myself working portrait, as in "Wisconsin Memories." Can you see that one done any other way?

So I think I subconsciously favor landscape orientation, yet recognize that is not the only way I can work. I guess I don't want to be put in a box, and neither do my quilt designs.

What about you?

1 comment:

Rayna said...

Hmmm...interesting about orientation.
I never think about it, and my work all seems to end up roughly the same shape -- either landscape or almost square, and roughly the same size.