Getting low will give you another perspective that is often different. It makes the image stand out among all the others you may have. This means getting the camera to a low angle closer to the ground. The foreground will take a greater dominance. So this won’t work on everything. But wildflowers and rocks near the shore come to mind in images that I have seen. The effect makes the scene have more of a sense of depth. The flip side is that the background ship here is much less important.
I tend to favor horizontal shots lately. It’s because the format of the computer screen lends itself to horizontal images. Vertical is important to remember. And now we have the convenience of panorama and square cropping. Keep them in mind to enhance your image. And remember to crop. Here you have two choices. I lean toward the horizontal. It’s your call.
Sometimes it’s not necessary to see the whole object. In this case the ship is a common shot. But focusing in on a detail of the structure would bring the viewers attention in a way that is unique. It can be the difference that makes the shot stand out. With digital it’s ok to get a wide view and close up. But I find that the zoomed in shots tend to hold more interest.
it’s an interesting shot. There are foreground elements and there’s the tall ship in the background. What’s disconcerting is the wide angle distortion. It looks like the tall ship is falling out of the picture toward the back. Somehow in a vertical picture the distortion seems more noticeable. But the shot does stop you for a second look. Here’s an instance where cropping can’t really save you. I like the colors, probably helped by a polarizing filter. I am still a sucker for that brilliant blue cloudless sky. Hey! I tried to get all the elements into the image. Not bad, but it could’ve been better.
… that is the critical question. Fleeting moments, it’s an instant call. You get one try… pick. It doesn’t come very often you get to shoot one with and one without flash. It’s a choice. Here David sat long enough for me to get two shots. The Canon G11 white balances automatically. Great! But it’s still ambient light you deal with. So it’s not quite right. The natural lighting gives less detail in the eyes and no gleam or catch light for the eye. Flash is a little too bright and a bit too artificial for my taste. I would pick the natural light. I’m not a fan of obsessive manipulation in Photoshop, so this is what it is.