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.
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.
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,