This shot is a good example of Murnau's mastery of image composition.
The arch in Wismar dominates the frame while still being large enough to dwarf the subject.
The lines are simple yet powerful. Image composition is one thing. But how did Murnau get
the ship in the background?
Thanks to our friend Jonas for sending us these images.
Give up? Murnau's camera was through the gate in the photo on the right looking back at us. (duh)
Rather than construct large sets, Murnau used elements of nature and existing structures. Some of the most striking imagery in the film was shot at Orava Castle in Slovakia. A detailed history and images can be found at this
Slovak Heritage web site.
A very detailed image and brief history is available at
See Scene-by-scene descriptions of the scenes used in Shadow of the Vampire