Pick a Colour - tyneholm
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Pick a Colour

Assignment S06

Using the relationship between similar colours as a visual anchors a useful technique to engage with the viewer and to keep them looking at an image for longer. This is a really simple assignment, designed to make you think about the colours you see and to develop your powers of observation.

Look for a number of elements in a scene that all have the same dominant colour and create a series of six shots. The best way to approach this initially is to let it happen naturally; just wait until you come across one bold instance of your chosen colour and then look around to find something else in the scene with the same colour. They can be close together or some way apart, but if there is any distance between them make sure it isn’t too ‘busy’.

If you’re wondering whether you can move an object, either by introducing it into the frame or by repositioning it, this is an issue which has always troubled street photographers, and there is no right or wrong answer. Purists would say that you should never change the scene in front of you, because it takes away the authenticity of a street image, but others would argue that you can do whatever you need to do to make a better picture. You decide.

View the images.


  • You can turn up the vibrancy a little in post-production to make your chosen colour ‘pop’ or, if you’re shooting Raw, tweak its channel using the colour mixer. Don’t overdo it though, or you’ll end up with an unrealistic image.
  • Think about the background. The more monotone or less cluttered it is, the better this technique will work.
  • Don’t restrict yourself to just two instances of the colour in an image, the more the merrier.

Field Notes

  • Sometimes the colour – and the connection – are right in front of you.
  • And sometimes you need to work harder to find the connection.