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After completing the 366 project in 2012 and deciding not to carry on this year I’ve been twiddling my thumbs a bit, itching to embark on something else, but it had to be less time consuming and a little more flexible, but still challenging.

I was catching up on some reading over the weekend, thawing out after a romp in the snow with the dog and came across an e-book I had downloaded over Christmas. It’s called “Square” by a photographer and author Andrew Gibson and looks at images that are square as opposed to the more usual rectangular format. Aside from featuring some really beautiful photography this book looks into the increasing popularity of square images and gives some great pointers into what makes them work.

We are so used to the rectangular format that unless we have a camera (e.g. a medium format camera) or  an app (Instagram etc) that creates a square image, we forget to consider anything else. It’s perhaps the amazing popularity of the Instagram type photo that has contributed to a re-appreciation of the square image.

I took a look back at my 366 images and could only find a handful that were square, excluding those that I had taken with a retro camera app on my phone – you can tell which these are as they feature a border. I didn’t create any of the non-retro camera images with the intention of them being square – I decided to do that afterwards on the computer, so I wasn’t really setting out to shoot and compose for square images.

Click to enlarge

The square format has got me buzzing with excitement and now my thumbs are twitching rather than twiddling. During 2013 I am going to create a series of images that are square and intended to be square from the outset – I’ll be specifically looking for subjects and compositions that work for the square format. I’m not setting any timescales or boundaries, other than I’ll work on it throughout the year. As and when I take an image I am happy with I’ll share it on this blog and ask for feedback.

You can download “Square” by Andrew Gibson (and other great e-books from him and other authors) at Craft and Vision. Each book costs around £2 to £4 and they often sell bundles together. I love the fact that I can download them to my tablet and read them wherever I am. I’ve not bought a bad one yet – they are highly readable, not too techie and the imagery is stunning. I’ve not been paid to say this, they don’t even know I’m recommending them!

By Jane Burkinshaw. Share this post by clicking on one of the Share buttons on the right hand side. I’d love to hear your comments too!

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