Tag Archives: reflections


Reflections can be a nuisance, but they can also help create interesting effects, Consider reflections in a store window which contains mannequins. The reflections can be of people pausing, chatting, looking into the window or walking or running past it. The reflections must be taken from an actual location. The final solution(s) need not just remain as flat photographic prints.


Reflections can be visually exciting and can be found on a variety of unexpected surfaces. With the sun shining on the subject, glass buildings and shop windows provide interesting reflections of city life and architecture. Calm water reflects the land and sky to create a perfect mirror image, whereas a slightly disturbed surface breaks up the picture in a way that is often very attractive. A close look at any reflective surface – the chrome on a car, cutlery, puddles or a wet pavement – can lead to new picture ideas. Mirrors in all their shapes and guises offer many possibilities. Think of the convex mirrors in shops or on sharp bends in the road, wing mirrors or rear view mirrors in cars, or mirror sunglasses. You can even take your own mirror and position it to photograph a scene without people realizing what you’re up to.

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Self no self

Drawing from concurrent visual and mental events.

We all experience life on several levels at any given moment. Very frequently what
we are looking at and what we are thinking about may seem to have only a tangential
relationship or none at all.

A drawing can be made from visual observation as well as from what we are aware of in our minds. To illustrate this make a useful analogy with our experiences in an airport where there are arrivals and departures, and also flyovers that do not land.

Try to think of your drawing in this way and allow it to evolve as your awareness changes. By focusing on the complexities of experience within a moment of time, the emphasis of the drawing is placed on inclusion and dynamic involvement rather than resolution or completion. In short, one drawing will record both visual and mental events.

Start by using your eyes, and while looking in a window, draw your reflection as well as everything in the vicinity that you see, both through the glass and on its surface. Windows looking into a space slightly darker than the one you occupy tend to give the best reflections. As yon draw from this view, use your mind to include also what you know about what you are drawing, what you imagine, and other things you sense or are thinking about, even if they are not directly connected to what you are doing and actually seeing.


The way in which surfaces both absorb and reflect light is what makes us able to see them in the first place. Reflected light is also an integral part of any outdoor scene, illuminating areas that would otherwise be in shadow. But most of the time we do not see these reflections directly.

Some surfaces, though, are such good reflectors that they create their own images, mirroring the things around them. Water, glass, and polished metal all provide an opportunity to photograph things in an indirect way, resulting in a more oblique view of the world.

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Glass in urban landscapes:

The mirrored glass used in the construction of many modern office blocks can create strong and colorful reflections.

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Which way is up? If you choose to fill the frame with a reflection, not only do you get a slightly abstracted view of your subject, but you must also decide which way up to display the shot.

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Rain and neon lights:

Puddles provide good reflections, particularly when mirroring bright city lights.