The subject of composition and framing in photography has filled whole books, but I always try to write these posts in the simplest, most easy-to-remember way possible. I am going to give you a few tips I’ve picked along the way, and some sources where you can get more in-depth information.
Most people tend to put their subjects smack in the center, which most times for pretty boring pictures. This are some composition tips to help you along.
I wish I had shot pictures specifically for this post, but I didn’t have time, instead I quickly checked my files to find the appropriate ones, unfortunately, they are old, and not very good in some cases. They’ll have to do.
One of the (many) composition tools is the Rule of Thirds. Place your main subject along an imaginary horizontal or vertical line running along a third of the frame, it will draw the eye to it, even if it is not in the center of the frame.
If you take a picture of a person leaning against something, try to place the object they lean on at the edge of your frame. Try to imagine this picture if this person had been placed in the center of the frame and you’ll see how it wouldn’t work.
Frame your subject by objects in the foreground to add interest and depth.
A person’s eyes should (usually) be the focus of a portrait. Compose your picture to draw the eye towards the subject’s eyes (unless there is something else you wish to tell).
Take pictures from an unusual angle. While this looks like a city block on a hill, in reality these buildings made of Lego are but a few feet tall. By taking the picture from the ground I’ve manipulated their apparent size.
I have so far avoided words like “rule of thirds”, “grid” or “Fibonacci”, words that a pro, or informed amateur would understand right away. I actually suggest that you do get acquainted with these concepts. Once you do, try to compose your pictures following these guidelines. And of course, rules are meant to be broken, sometimes smack center also works. But you have to know what you are doing.
Any tips of your own you want to share?