Jan 072012

Back On Monday

A day of clouds cleared late in the afternoon over Matera, Italy. This was good timing with no filter and minimal post productions. The weather gods were smiling for me. Leica M9/50mm Summicron. © Adam Marelli

Using the Rebated square allowed me to position the church at the top and locate the building in the foreground.

Happy New Year everyone.  Three days rest and the jet lag has worn off.  There are a few more espressos between me and normalcy, but I am excited to be back in NYC.  The trip to Matera was a big surprise.  Most of the people I consulted before the trip recommended we stay a day or so in this small Medieval town.  I could have stayed for at least a month.  The hillside caves were a seductive place to spend the New Year and the winding streets were a fantastic setting for street photography.

Lather's from a new series called OnSite. © Adam Marelli

Monday Morning

Starting on Monday the articles will be flowing once again.  Picking up where we left off, our quest to understand Cartier-Bresson’s Surrealist roots will continue followed by:

  • My impressions of Matera through its faces and history
  • A strange story of a Leica stolen from a German factory during the war
  • More “Great Compositions” leading off with Rene Burri
  • Announcements for my upcoming workshops with Eric Kim, here in NYC
  • And an update on a project I started towards the end of the year called OnSite, a portrait series of NYC Construction Workers.

A visit to the temples in Tikal Guatemala taken with a Hasselbald 500c/m and an 80mm Zeiss. © Adam Marelli

Lets raise a glass to those mysterious Mayan’s and welcome in 2012 together!

Best-Adam Marelli

  6 Responses to “2012, Finally!”

  1. Hey Adam the photos are awesome. I noticed the composition of Matera, Italy and the Lathers are designed on the same divisions. One large Square on top of two small squares ( two overlaying squares ).

    On the Matera photo .. I like how you locked the top of the cityscape and the steeple within the two major rebated squares. You perfectly aligned the front of the church’s roof on the sinister angle of the top rebated square.

    Great Job Adam!! You should think about doing this photo stuff professional!! :)

  2. Thanks Aladine,

    There is nothing like a Barnstone beating to get the pictures in order. Its great how design idioms lend themselves so well images regardless of the content.

    Not sure if everyone will know exactly what you mean, so if you read Aladines comment and have a question, let me know.

    I was very fortunate to have the sky clear on that day. The week was spent waiting for that steeple to light up.


  3. Hi,
    I also have enjoyed your articles and have been exposed to many new concepts. I would really appreciate if you could explain Vargas’ comment to me. It is driving me crazy that I don’t know what those terms mean. Lol.


    • Hi Sean,

      The short version of the explanation would be to do the following. In both pictures, draw a line at a 45 degree angle from the top left hand corner. It would be called the sinister diagonal of the rebated square. In both images you will hit a major element of the design. On the church you will hit the angle of the churches roof. That is what Aladine met. He and I both attended Barnstone Studios (the DVD’s available on the right hand side).

      The Rebated Square is a design technique that painters have used for thousands of years. In a 35mm image it will break an image into thirds because a 35mm is 1:1.5 ratio, or a square and a half. I teach these techniques in my One on One classes and they will also be reviewed in this years workshops. If you are interested in applying design to your photography let me know. Its a very rewarding experience to understand how design can strengthen your images.


      • Hi Adam,

        could you please draw the lines and squares you have applied in this picture?
        This will help to better understand your composition.
        Thanks in advance.

        • Hi Foodhunter,

          Just added the square on an image above. Aladine was commenting that the roof of the church was set on the right to left (sinister) diagonal of the square. the 45 degree angles are referred to as the “rebated square.”

          Hope that is helpful.


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