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When I saw The Abominable Bride on the 2nd of January, it reminded me of this scene from the 3rd Season finale (two years ago!)

The framing of this scene always struck me as very important and deliberately done – going from very tight shots of both Sherlock and John’s faces to show the intimacy of their parting, to these long form shots where they are centered in the bottom half of the frame with lots of negative space around them.

I’m a big fan of negative space and how it can be used in composition. It’s odd, how space can actually be used to signify closeness in this way. Rather than a feeling of emptiness it emphasizes the “us against the world” bond the two have.

Contrast that with the last frame of John standing alone, in which the negative space is suddenly about isolation, and being left behind.

 

BBC Sherlock, Season 3 Episode 3 “His Last Vow“

Directed by Nick Hurran

Cinematography by Neville Kidd

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