Hey there and welcome to May! I don’t know about you, but it feels like it took forever for May to get here. Not sure why I’m excited about it considering we are still in quarantine. Maybe it’s because we’re (hopefully) closer to this all being over. It has certainly been like a bad nightmare but there has been some good to come out of it. For one, it has caused people to slow down and smell the roses. My husband and I have been able to reconnect with each other and our teenage son. Sure, we’d like to be earning money to pay our bills but we figure it will come. That’s one of the reasons I’m working so hard now so that I will be prepared for when all of this is over. Ok, enough of that. I’m guessing/hoping you are ready to get down to the point of this blog which is, dun ta da…composition.
I’ve written about composition before. Mainly it was about the rule of thirds and possibly the use of negative space. What’s the rule of thirds? Basically, it says that you should divide your image into 9 equal segments using two horizontal and two vertical lines (3 top, 3 middle, 3 bottom) and place the most important element in the image on one of the lines or at one of the intersections. I wrote a blog about it some time ago but it was on a different platform. So, I no longer have it. Below is a demonstration of what I’m talking about. As you can see, the two women are on two of the lines and the woman on the right, her left eye is at the intersection of two lines. Had I posed them differently, the image may or may not have been as interesting.
Negative space is something I love to use. Basically, negative space is just like it sounds. There is a large part of the image that has no particular point of interest. It is usually for a dramatic effect as in the image below:
Oftentimes, an image is more interesting when you don’t put the subject right in the middle of the frame. Of course, for certain images, like headshots, the middle of the frame is fine. It can also be fine if you just want to fill the frame with your subject. This is great if you want to eliminate distractions like a busy background. It also works in making the image more intense. In the below image, I filled the frame, somewhat and also used another technique called framing. This is where you photograph your subject with some type of “framing” that pulls your eye to the main part of the subject. I used the hood of her boxing robe to frame her face. In addition to that, the way I lit her face brings your eye there as well because the eye is usually drawn to the lightest part of an image.
Have you heard of the term leading lines? Again, these are what they sound like too. They are lines in the image that point to or lead to the subject that the photographer wants you to pay attention to. Like this image below:
The railing leads your eye to the beautiful bride at the end. This isn’t the best example of leading lines but it’s what I’ve got right now. Anyway, those are just some of the basics regarding composition. As you can see, composition is a very important part of photography. If you don’t have good composition, more than likely your image will just be mediocre. It could be good but good composition will make it much better. I’ll leave you with this quote:
“Good composition is like a suspension bridge. Each line adds strength and takes none away.” ~ Robert Henri