Less is More

Recenlty one of my most popular prints has been this image of the Great Buddha in Kamakura.  This image is a good example of "less is more".  I think this image is powerful because it is only one part of this famous Buddha statue.  Because the you cannot see the whole, you are free to imagine what the whole looks like.  Focusing in on one part of the face allows one to see the Buddhist philosophy which has been captured in the expression of the eyes by the artist.  One can almost feel the calmness and tranquility which are made possible by meditating Buddhist monks.
I was also drawn to the rich color of the patina of this statue.  This monochrome image allows one to see the many different subtle shades of blue-green which make up the whole.   The color is also a result of the interesting history of this artwork.  The Great Buddha was fabricated more than 700 years ago and was originally housed inside a massive wooden temple.  More than 500 years ago the temple building was washed away by a huge tsunami.  This wonderful patina is a result of the bronze statue being exposed to the elements for more than five centuries.
Whenever I am composing my photographs, I always ask myself what is essential to include in the image to convey the story I want to tell.  Then I try to pare down the composition to only the essentials.  Including any non-essential elements can be very distracting.  Focusing only on the essentials creates a much more powerful image.
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