Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #116: Symmetry

The desire for symmetry, for balance, for rhythm in form as well as in sound, is one of the most inveterate of human instincts.

Edith Wharton

As I read Patti’s lead post for this week’s Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #116: Symmetry, I couldn’t help but agree with her: Symmetry IS a powerful tool to create dramatic and impactful images — in any of its forms: horizontal, vertical, and radial.

Although I didn’t know the term horizontal symmetry when I stood almost elbow to elbow in front of the most photographed bridge in Maine (photo above), I do know it now. What a powerful impact is has had on many people who drive to the Village of Somesville on Mount Desert Island to photograph not only the pleasant arching white bridge but also its reflection in Somes Creek and the seasonal surroundings that enhance it. But thanks to writer and blogger Miriam Hurdle, I now know another term — reflective symmetry — that applies to this bridge that visitors include in calendars and family albums each year.

For vertical symmetry, I can’t think of any photo that I would rather share with you: the Hall of Maps in the Vatican Museum viewed during a private, after-hours tour with staff. At first, my eyes were glued to the marvelous maps with all their detail and color, but once I looked up to see where we were going, this sight took my breath away. I quickly grabbed my iPhone, moved to the front of the group so that no visitors would block the view, and snapped the picture. The painted ceilings, geometric flooring, statues lined up against the wall, maps of ancient times, and the symmetry — all as Patti calls it: an impactful image.

Vatican Museum Hall of Maps seen after hours.

Finally, I offer an example of radiant symmetry taken on a routine morning walk through my neighborhood. I could see a stand of daisies in the distance gracing the mailbox of one of my neighbors, a common sight some might say. But there’s nothing common about God’s handiwork in designing the colorful array in the center of each simple blossom.

A common, but spectacular daisy!

If you would like to contribute photos of symmetry, link to Patti’s original post using the Lens-Artists tag. You may find, as I did, that you enjoy looking at your shots with a different perspective. And that appreciation of symmetry can truly enhance our love of a picture.

Travel with ready eyes,


27 thoughts on “Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #116: Symmetry

  1. Ohana and Friends Travel

    Those photos are so beautiful! I especially appreciate the one from the Gallery of Maps. We visited there in 2018 and could have a whole day there admiring the beauty of the room…and for me, the handiwork of the beautifully stitched tapestries. Thank you for taking me back to that moment.

    1. Oh, the Places We See

      I could have spent a lot of time there, but our guide kept us moving. Not enough time at all. But I do understand the limited endurance of tourists and anxious guides ready to go home to their families. All in all, it was a great experience- just too short.

  2. pattimoed

    Really fabulous photos, Rusha. I love your shot of the Vatican ceiling. It was smart to do a private tour after hours. We took a small tour in the early morning, but even that was mobbed. Your daisy shot is wonderful, too. Great examples of symmetry!

  3. WanderingCanadians

    Well done, these photos are beautiful. The Gallery of Maps was one of my favourite rooms in the Vatican Museum. Of course when I went, there were lots of people in the room. A private tour of the place after-hours sounds amazing.

  4. Teresa

    I like your photo of the Vatican Museum. I was about to put that same one up but it seemed not as symmetrical as yours because there were too many people at that time that we went. Well done.

    1. Oh, the Places We See

      What a wonderful place that is! Although we had it almost to ourselves, we were hurried along. I would love to have both time and solitude to read about and examine the treasures of the Vatican. Oh, to go back!!

  5. Tina Schell

    LOL Rusha, I have that EXACT bridge photo – how many others do you suppose we share it with!! Your Vatican image is extraordinary. Beautiful symmetry at its best.

  6. Amy

    The reflective symmetry image is perfect and so beautiful. I’m in awe with your Vatican Museum image; and no one is in front of your camera!

It makes our day to hear from you.