Thursday, July 19, 2012

Photo Composition Class #4: Photographic Study

The latest assignment for my Photo Composition class, held last night, was a Photographic Study.  As I mentioned in my post for class #3, I have seen some photographic studies on the internet before, so I kind of knew what I was expected to do.  I decided on The Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist in downtown Milwaukee while at Bastille Days on Sunday since it was old, had character, and I could shoot both inside and outside, since they were having an open house.

I first took a long shot of the top of the cathedral from the center of the festival using my telephoto lens before walking over to the cathedral itself since the aqua-coloring and clock in the middle caught my eye from so far away.

When I approached the cathedral, I saw the directory building, and thought the landscaping and black gate made a good shot.  Please forgive the brown grass, but we are in the middle of a drought right now.  Hmm, maybe I can go back into Photoshop and change it to a lusher green.  Just a thought.

Above the entrance to the chapel is this cool looking emblem and stained glass window.  My teacher liked this one especially due to the texture of the wood against the etched glass.  I have to admit, this one was hard to crop since I first had the open door included, which I thought would add balance and interest, but decided it distracted too much from the detail.

I then went inside and saw just how lovely this chapel is.  I really liked the dark peach color to the ceiling (which, unfortunately is coming out a bit orange on my monitor), the marble, and the gigantic pipe organ.  The hanging sculpture of the Passion above the altar was also very stunning.

I then went off to the side of the chapel and noticed how interesting this row of columns leading up to a statue of Mary was.  Since one of our past assignments was lines & shadows, I knew this would work well for the study.

Since I was in such a beautiful chapel, I definitely wanted to get a shot of a stained-glass window, and there were many to choose from in this chapel.  I chose the one of Saint Jude since I once visited St. Jude Hospital in Memphis.

My last photograph of St. John's Cathedral was of the baptism area.  It was hard to get a good shot of this area without getting either the altar in front or the entrance door on the other side.  I chose a close-up since I loved the colors and design of the marble.

If you would like information on The Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist, including tours, Mass schedule, and outreach programs, visit  You can even take a virtual tour of the cathedral.

Next week's assignment is Editoral Portraits, including street photography.  I'll post the results next week.  Thanks for reading!

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