“Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow, otherwise known as EPCOT” by Brandon Watts (Or the Many Layers of Interest)

"Epcot" by Brandon Watts

"Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow, otherwise known as EPCOT" by Brandon Watts

It’s fun and interesting to provide several layers of interest within a photo.  On the surface, the shot could appear to be quite simple, but the more a viewer looks upon the photo, the more it makes them think.  Maybe it’s something subtle to look for, or maybe it inspires deep thoughts about the photo.  Such a photo can be intriguing on so many levels that appeals to a much larger audience.  One such photo by photographer Brandon Watts is his photo titled:  Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow, Otherwise Known As EPCOT (hereafter referred to as Epcot), which is shown here.

As my first impression of Epcot, it’s a classic set-up of the famed Spaceship Earth, the ball that serves as the centerpiece of the EPCOT theme park at Disney World Resport.  It’s a nighttime shot, so you can a slew of interesting colors that introduces one layer of interest.  And Brandon framed the shot so the entire ball was not visible, which adds interest in and of itself.  The photo is tagged HDR, which would lead me to believe this is an HDR photo…but not the typical over-compressed cartoon-like HDRs that you’ve seen.  This one’s HDR is actually quite subtle, the only real indication of such is the seems of the geodesic ball look a bit too well defined at points.  This is of course another layer of interest for those with a well trained eye.  But then we have a long exposure of about 3 seconds (though if this is truly an HDR, there may be other exposures of varying shutter speeds); long enough to see the patterns of the people moving about the space, but short enough so that the slower-moving ones are more solid.  The ghost-like human forms really paints a picture of human nature and the average paths that people follow.  This is yet another layer of interest for the second, third or fourth time you revisit the photo.

These layers of interest is really what is going to put your photos above and beyond the rest.  Shot by a different photographer, this could have been a simpler photo.  Or it could be much more complex in a less than ideal manner that is not as aesthetically pleasing to the eye.  Brandon has created so many different ways to look at this photo that you never look at the photo the same way each time it’s viewed.  This is a photo that might hang on someone’s wall because of the subject matter – a memory of a favorite trip to Disney World, or just a cool photo with so many layers that it introduces interest to the room.

Brandon Watts does a lot of work with HDR, and he’s quite skilled and sometimes subtle with his work.  The end result of most of his works is to be admired for the photo itself – the quality of the finished product – and not necessarily for it’s process.  This is something that I really respect of his work…the advanced process is simply a tool to meet his vision, but he is not controlled by it.  In fact, I pretty much said the same – in so many words – last September when we featured his photo, Tesoro HQ @ Sunset.  And he’s only gotten more refined since then.  So you really would benefit greatly by following Brandon and his works.  He offers much inspiration.


About Author

D. Travis North is a professional Landscape Architect, a Freelance Photographer and founder of Shutter Photo. Ever since he picked up his first SLR, his father’s Nikon N2000, he’s been hooked on photography. Travis likes to photograph urban environments, architectural details and has a new-found interest in close-up photography. His work can be found at D. Travis North Photography. Follow Travis on twitter: @dtnorth.

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