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Would something horrible happen if I broke the rules?

I ask myself that question almost every time I take a photo. What sort of mess might possibly occur if I alternately break the photographic rules of exposure, composition, or focus?

I know the rule of thirds, the rule of odds, filling the frame, leaving space — the traditional guidelines of good picture-taking.

The truth is, I’m a haphazard photographer.  I’m shockingly inept at the mathematics of exposure, shutter speed, aperture setting and know just enough to produce some happy accidents.

I rely more on gut instinct and feel; less on carefully calculated outcomes.

This approach doesn’t win any photography awards to be sure, however it inspires me to create — free from the shackles of dogged perfectionism.  Each risky image is, for me, a psychological triumph.

Eye of the Beholder is my new monthly photo feature showcasing the often surprising results of my experiments.

Thanks to a worldwide readership for following my previous photo series, Scene on Queen

I hope you enjoy Eye of the Beholder and the simple stories behind the images.

Your comments and are always welcome! (click on photo to enlarge)

Toronto's CN Tower and the little lamp post that grew.

Toronto’s CN Tower and the little lamp post that grew.

Story behind the image: I was on my way home from the city’s east end after having dinner with friends. Travelling west on the Lakeshore/Gardiner in my MINI Cooper, downtown traffic moved at a good clip. Suddenly, cars slowed to a crawl, then a complete stop. There was an accident up ahead.

At a glacial pace, the glut funnelled off the highway at the next exit.

I found myself presented with a rare sight:  I was face-to-face with the CN Tower with no obstructions and had nothing to do except stare at the massive hulk.

I grew up in Toronto; I see the tower every day and barely notice it.  That day however, it was comically juxtaposed with a regular old street lamp that stretched almost as tall as the tower itself.

I peered through the sunroof, grabbed my Coolpix camera from the glove compartment and snapped a few photos, hoping that at least one shot would properly convey the bizarre optical illusion I felt privileged to witness.

This image told the story best – with all its imperfections — including the blur and ghost-like glare.

– 30 –

 

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