Ben Marcin makes fantastic photos of solitary buildings. We met at the Filter Photo Festival portfolio review in Chicago and during our brief conversation I observed a quality in his work that parallels my own. Marcin positions the camera in a way that removes all dimension from the subject. In his series Last House Standing, the buildings are flat. Your eye is immediately drawn to them because its verticals and horizontals are the backbone of the picture.
This way of describing a subject as “flat” never occurred to Marcin, yet it’s a form I’ve recently been exploring in my photography. Today’s photo was taken at Lake Apopka in Orlando. I’m trying to create an artificial horizon by flattening the bridge and the board walk to make a nice line for the eye that coincides with the vertical of the palm trees.
Mobile photography is what helped me develop this concept of flat, dimensionless images. I was looking for ways to make interesting photos given the constraints of those tiny cameras. Focusing on lines and composition seemed a good place to start and, before I knew it, the technique founds its way into my DSLR photography too.