Brooks Jensen recently did a micropodcast about his favourite photo aspect ratio. It was a good point – I use a different one, but choosing to consistently crop to a 16:10 ratio is one of the best photographic choices I've made in recent years. I know how space will work in my photos before I take them, and can plan for their final presentation.

And even when I break the rule I have backup rules.The very rare vertical photos tend to go to a 5:7 ratio, while panoramas use a 5:2 ratio. Not always, maybe, but that's the starting point and they need a reason to be something else.

Same joke, two different formats. (Stop, light.)

The colour photo is from the XT2 and 16/1.4, merged from a series of lightly HDR'ed photos to fake both the dynamic range and time duration. The monochrome photo is the rangefinder and Zeiss 35/2, using a yellow filter on Delta 400. Using my 16:10 ratio on film is actually more effective than digital, because film frames are a smidge wider than 3:2. And if I ever want to show off the full frame, I can crop to include the back film frame on the sides without including the white overscan area from the top and bottom of the 35mm film strip.

There are plenty of other decision to make in post-processing, and in that I'm simultaneously simplifying and diversifying my techniques. But knowing the shape of the photo, even before I start, is its foundation.