2022 Week 10 – Top Down

Create a top down photograph with interest. The purpose of this type of photo is to capture the items in your frame from a different point of view – taken from directly above the subject. Regardless of whether your subject is people, food or an inanimate object, think about how you can use this point of view to create a compelling photograph. Your shot can be a portrait or a still-life. It can be commercial or lifestyle. Use your creativity and think about the story you want to tell with your image.

“Ice Cold” by Rainie Mills

There are many ways to produce a top-down photograph. The above image was taken with a DSLR and a C-stand. If you don’t have a c-stand you could use a tripod or simply build your set at a level where you can stand above the subject and shoot straight down on it.  Cell-phone users can use a tripod, place the phone on a shelf or area above the subject, or get creative with ways to elevate the device. I’ve seen people tape phones to a ceiling fan or the end of a broomstick and have someone hold it horizontally above the set. Think of creative ways you can utilize whatever equipment you have to make it work.

Things to think about:

Notice what is interesting in the photo from this angle. Pay attention to the shapes and the way the shape of the object plays with the background. How can you make it more exciting or give it more dimension?

Lighting Considerations:

  • Will you use soft light or hard light?
  • Consider the brightness of the lighting and how close or far away your light source is from your subject
  • Color Temperature – are you mixing different light sources? Do they all match?
  • Direction – what direction is the light coming from and how will that affect the image.
  • Contrast – Are the rays striking the object from nearly all the same angles or from many different angles? What look are you going for? Hard shadow lines or soft ones?


Move the objects around in the frame, add or subtract objects until you get the composition you are looking for. Make sure you have the right components to add enough depth and texture to make your composition interesting from this angle.


Use basic backgrounds. Add texture. Pay attention to spacing of items. Pay attention to the way the items interact with each other. Always remember the message you are trying to portray with your image.

Some inspiration photographs can be found on the below Pinterest Board or on Google. If you want more visit You Tube for tutorials and explainers.

Challenge Summary

  • Take a new photo that shows the image from the top down.
  • Post your photo during the week of Sunday, March 06 and Saturday, March 12.
  • Please remember to comment on at least FIVE photo submissions this week by answering the question “why?” in your comments. In other words, “why do I like (or not like) this photo?” or “why did this photo catch my eye?”

The friendly community guidelines are pretty simple

  • Take a new photo for the current weekly theme, not something from your back catalog or someone else’s image.
  • Post your photo each week to our active communities on Facebook or Flickr (or both). Tag the photo:  #2022photochallenge #photochallenge #tempusaura #trevorcarpenterphotochallenge 
  • Don’t leave home without your camera.

Participating in the 2022 Trevor Carpenter Photo Challenge is fun and easy.

About Rainie Mills

I am a self-taught photographer living in beautiful Naples, Florida with my husband, daughter and grand-dog. In 2014 I bought my first DSLR and started my photography journey. I had no idea it would become such an addicting hobby! I fumbled through learning what all the buttons were for, what the settings meant and what photography really was about. During my early days of learning, I found The Trevor Carpenter Photo Challenge which provided me with guidance and feedback to become a better photographer. This group made me grow more than any basic reading or videos I was doing at the time because feedback is so important in learning. Today, I mainly lean towards product and fine-art photography, however, since moving to Florida I see myself moving into the wildlife realm. I love photography and creating art and look forward to creating challenges that will inspire the members of the Trevor Carpenter Photo Challenge community. You can find some of my work at rainiemills.com or on Instagram https://www.instagram.com/rainiemills