Repetition, similarity, direction. Those are the elements of pattern. They work the viewer’s expectations and can be used to imply or distract or a number of other things I’m sure. It’s the photo’s rhyme scheme.
This photo says a lot about my relationship with my studio. There were four soundproof panels a few months ago. The fourth is lying on the floor out of frame. The neat pattern being broken drags the eye to the empty space, suggesting loss and neglect. The shadow from the bookshelf is ugly. Ideally, I would have lit this scene from the camera so there wouldn’t be any shadows, but I rushed it. There is natural light coming from the left and fluorescent light coming from above, it’s kind of a lighting mess.
Another sad park pic, this one may be the most moving. The pattern of the barrier is strong and telling, but I think the most important element of this photo is the perspective. I didn’t fully think this through while I was shooting, but in hindsight taking the photo from the eye-level of a toddler makes this photo a lot sadder. I was just trying to capture the symmetry between the railing posts, but looking at this photo again I find myself wanting to climb the stairs and take the slide. One big lesson I’m learning is that the photos you think are the best in the field may not turn out to be the best, and the photos you weren’t sure about could be great. What practical advice that fact suggests is that I should take a lot of photos in the field and treat them all like they have the potential to be great. A lot of these shots were taken a number of times also. I was constantly adjusting, which is probably not the best way to shoot, but the more I learn the less I’ll have to adjust.