My Photovation Challenge Week 3 | Details

Life is stitched together by details. Probably a number of details so immense that we can’t even begin to comprehend it. Think about the space you are in as you read this.

What is around you? Are you outside? Are you inside? Is it light? Dark? Are there plants around? Do they have leaves or flowers? What kind of colors stand out? Is there anything on the ground? Anything on the walls? Are there people around? Animals? Are there very large items around you? Or are they mostly small items?

These are just a few things that you can think about to start noticing details right away.

As this post is being written, there are about 7 details that catch the eye right away. The pattern of our favorite yellow rug on the floor, the pattern of the buttons sewn on our upholstered sofa, the names of influencial people in history on our bookshelf, the tiny needles of our candelabra cactus, glittery flags from our wedding cake topper, a fluffy white blanket, and an owl.

Details of a room

Once you know how to look for details you can use that skill to enhance your photography as an art. This article by Dan Bailey has a lot of great information on creating detail!

Here are the five points he gives in that article:

  1. The single detail
  2. Details that give a sense of place
  3. Larger details
  4. Lines and textures
  5. Human details

Now here are some photos from us that illustrate those points:

The Single Detail


Close up of a snap dragon flower on a sunny morning. © Tabitha Friesen



The empty exoskeleton of a crab found on the beach at Caesarea, Israel. © Tabitha Friesen


Examining the details of a dragonfly found on the back porch. © Tabitha Friesen


A rusty lock on a frosty day. © Tabitha Friesen

Details that give a sense of place


Fresh fish sits on a bed of ice at the Souk in Jerusalem, Israel. © Matthew Friesen


Women sort through fresh breads and bakeries at the outdoor part of the Souk market in Jerusalem, Israel. © Matthew Friesen


The detail is the log, but it gives a sense to where you are. © Tabitha Friesen

Larger Details


An iceberg at the top of one of the peaks towering over Moraine Lake. This is a perfect example of the “larger details”. © Matthew Friesen


These two red chairs sit on the side of a huge mountain. That’s a pretty large detail. © Tabitha Friesen

Lines and Textures


© Matthew Friesen

Train Bridge_TDF-7965

Walking path on a train bridge. © Tabitha Friesen


Dry, cracked earth left behind after a lake dried up. Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado © Matthew Friesen


Drops of rain on a mountain top lake in Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado. (Nice contrast to the one above!) © Matthew Friesen


Cracked paint, and rust on a weathered sign by the railroad. © Tabitha Friesen

Human Details

Train Station-3934

© Tabitha Friesen


A woman sobs at the Wailing Wall, Jerusalem, Israel. © Tabitha Friesen

2013-04-15 at 14-12-01

A man welds a broken tractor piece. © Matthew Friesen


Getting help with directions. © Tabitha Friesen

As you can see from the details above, detail shots don’t necessarily mean macro shots. In fact, we don’t actually have a macro lens at all. Details can give clarity to your surroundings and showcase interesting or unique things in common places.

Detail photography has some nice benefits too! Here are three points from us:

  1. It challenges you to see photographs in elements, rather than the whole scene.
  2. It’s also helpful in story telling or photo journalism. It creates more compelling and informative photos, than general snapshots.
  3. It helps you learn the basics of composition, by forcing you to think outside the box focusing on a little piece of the big picture. Rather than just snapping a photo of a pretty scene.

Share your detail photos with us, use #MyPhotovation when posting your photos on Twitter or Instagram.

Thanks for reading!

-Matt & Tab

2 thoughts on “My Photovation Challenge Week 3 | Details

  1. leannegbrandon says:

    Reading this reminds me I need to get back to writing a song about the beautiful little things we should count as blessings. Got some lines, but not a complete song yet. Thanks for the reminder. Being a visual person (besides also being auditory), your posts inspire me. Thanks again.

    Leanne Brandon Sent from my iPad



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