Juxtapose of the Old and the New

Jul 5, 2008
Northeast - Sengkang.

1. in what area is critique to be sought?
In the area of composition. Is there a point for this shot? I hardly shoot in portrait orientation as I prefer landscape. So I would like to know how can I improve on a portrait orientation?

2. what one hopes to achieve with the piece of work?
This is an old abandoned theatre in the middle of the town centre of Malacca. Behind it are the new buildings. I am trying to create a juxtapose of the old and the new, bringing together the old and the new into one photo.

3. under what circumstance is the picture taken? (physical conditions/emotions)
Bright and sunny, I have minimal control over my camera as this was taken with my iPhone 5. So settings like shutter speed, exposure and ISO are all left to the device. Did editing with Snapseed on mobile.

4. what the critique seeker personally thinks of the picture
I think the composition can be much better, just that I can't place my finger on where to improve, hence here to get some help. Thank you.

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Staff member
May 31, 2010
Hi, i'm not too sure what to make of this. you may have to rework on the framing. The idea to juxtapose is fine but i would go along with the juxtapose of two complete structures. At the least there should be something interesting about the facade to show. Right now, it appears as though you have attached a meaning to it and see it as juxtapose.


Senior Member
Apr 12, 2009
Doesn't seem like juxtaposing to me because there is no connection between the two structures. Having said that, composition-wise perhaps you could have moved to the left so that you can minimise the sky and capture more of the building in the background.

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Senior Member
Mar 19, 2012
I feel if you stepped into the round area and shot a wide angle or fisheye type of image (whoops, iphone is not a interchangeable lens camera), having a symmetry of left and right being filled with the old structure and the new structure towering over it, would be very nice.


New Member
Jan 28, 2008
Where's the juxtaposition?
throwing big words around isn't going to magically improve anyone's photography.

Personally, I don't see the juxtaposition at all. I assume you want to emphasize the stark difference of the age of the buildings in the same area, but all I see is the old building. I hardly noticed the new one. I'm not sure how else you can do this if you want to force this theme because I'm not at the scene. But if let's say I'm not limited in movement in anyway, I would place the buildings side by side, shoot from the floor but straight ahead, and not upwards. Landscape, with the old building and some sky, and the new building "shooting up" outside the top of the frame. You can then emphasize that the new building is "big, shiny, tall, etc".

Or if you have a telephoto lens, you can place the new building in front of the old building, with the old building sticking out behind the new (blurred). portrait mode, emphasizing that new and shiny building are replacing the old.

Or you can place the old building infront of the new in the telephoto shot (with the new building blurred), to emphasize that old buildings are "pretty" too.

In any case, I wouldn't include so much of the floor of the old building. It serves no purpose.

In a separate note, your "new building" seems to be toppling over.

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