What a Difference an Angle Makes
Adding interest and some drama to common sights can be as easy as just getting lower.
What makes you stop and look at a picture rather than flipping the page or scrolling on through? For me, it's when something ordinary is presented from a new perspective. If we want to make interesting photographs then we need to see things from all angles. Seemingly boring rock formations at low tide can become something interesting from an extremely low angle. (See below)
Of course, not absolutely everything has drama from a different angle. Sometimes, things are just boring and there is nothing to be done about it. But keeping your eyes open to the possibilities can gain you some pretty interesting photo opportunities that others might have missed.
Most of us see animals from the usual angles: looking up at a woodpecker in a tree or a soaring hawk high in the sky, looking down at a lizard motoring across the ground or at a bounding squirrel. These natural angles of observation are something we all enjoy but its something we see all the time. What is it like to be eye level with these creatures? When taking a photo can you put the viewer in a position to feel like he is looking up at something that he has always looked down on? (physically speaking, not metaphorically)
A Least Sandpiper stands barely 6 inches tall but that is the last thing on your mind when you are able to look at him eye level.
To me this is a photo worth looking at for a moment. The quality of the photo aside, (thank you Nikon) the angle allows a new perspective that you don't see every day.
You can combine this low angle approach with environmental factors as well. An eye level view of a foraging Willet can be striking but its something even more when you add in the crashing waves that he is braving:
Both photos contain a bird in decent focus at a low angle but only one tells a story. These shot opportunities don't come along all the time but if you have your eyes tuned in to the things happening around you, you are more likely to pick up on them and get yourself situated for a great photo from a new perspective.