Why do we tilt the camera?

When photographers tilt the lens it can be very cool or very annoying.  I do it and I don’t.  I used to do it more than I should and I had to start toning it down in 2010.   It is modern and it is interesting, but it is also a challenge to frame.  I find there is a point when you can feel yourself shift and no longer enjoy the angle.  It becomes distracting and then the photographer has failed.

The tilt seems to work in a couple instances.  When done for fashion it can be dramatic and engaging.  When the eyes are still the focal point of an image it works.  When the overall proportions of the composition are correct it is also ok.  However, when you feel yourself start to tilt your own head just to see the images, that is not a good thing.

For architecture it is almost never a good idea.  People do not like to see buildings falling down unless there is a real fine art component to it.  For landscapes you can tilt but there must still be a clear horizon line with layers, emotion and depth.

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