Today we’re going to talk about symmetry. Now, symmetry’s a tricky thing for people working in film and TV.
On the one hand, symmetrical faces have long been considered to be more ‘beautiful’, and therefore more attractive on screen.
However, symmetry for directors is a dangerous thing. When composing shots, too many symmetrical scenes can feel stagey, weirdly out of place with the flow of the drama.
That said, when used properly, symmetry can be really, really powerful. There are loads of examples of this in movies, but somehow, when it comes to TV, we don’t often recognise or appreciate the effort that people put in to create the perfect shot.
Which brings us to Sherlock. Now, Sherlock looks good – and that’s not just because Benedict Cumberbatch is in it.
The reason it looks good, as this excellent video from Celia Gómez makes clear, is that it’s using the same sort of framing tricks that we so often celebrate in movies.
There are loads of examples, all with neat grids to help you appreciate the framing.
Sherlock: picture perfect.
Like this? Check out the same trick used to break down Wes Anderson’s films. Sooo satisfying.