Friday, July 18, 2008

Rules of Composition in Photography :

With the decreasing price of digicam everyday, people nowadays are taking up photography as their passion. I hope this will be a help to the amateurs really passionate about photography.

Composition is the combining of distinct parts or elements to form a whole. In photography that thought is very important in taking good pictures. The following guidelines are just to be thought about though, it is not necessary to try to use them with every picture you take or there wouldn't be any creativity in your work. Once you learn these rules and strategies you will be more prepared to find great picture spots and opportunities.

The Rule of Thirds has been used for centuries and is probably the most important of all the composition techniques. The Rule of Thirds means that the frame can be divided into three horizontal sections and three vertical sections and therefore, where the horizontal and vertical lines intersect makes an ideal location for the more important parts of your picture. By locating your main subject at one of the four intersections you give the subject more emphasis than if it was right smack in the middle of the picture. This is also a good technique if you have more than one important subject, the intersections can still work even if there's a subject on more than one. The divisions can also be helpful in setting up a picture, they can for example, help you determine how much horizon you want.

Then there comes the Diagonal Lines : Using diagonal lines can be a very effective way of drawing the eye of those viewing an image into it and to the main focal point.The ‘lines’ need not be actual lines - they could be the shape of a path, a line of trees, a fence, river or any other feature in an image.
Converging lines (two or more lines coming from different parts of an image to a single point) can be all the more effective.

Simplicity is the method of keeping the information in a photograph relatively simple. If your main subject is close, then your background should be very simple to avoid distractions. You should try to keep everything not important much less interesting than what's important in the frame. Especially avoid lines or objects that lead the eye away from the subject.

Leading Lines are used to lure the eye deeper into a picture or to an important subject. Straight, curved, parallel, or diagonal lines are all good at promoting interest.

Good examples could be roads, rivers, streams, bridges, branches, or fences but there are endless things that could be used.

Geometry : Geometry is used to give a symmetry to the figure. Consider the photo of the Qutab captured by me, it has a geometry of an Isosceles triangle, which makes the Qutab look more majestic. Several paintings and ace photographs contain a sense of geometry in it.

Using Geographic Shapes in this way isn’t something that I’ve done a lot of - but it is one technique to get balance in a shot and if you’re clever, to lead the eye into it (in a similar way to the diagonal lines rule above).

Several geometrical shapes like semi-circular, oval and triangular give the shots a satisfying symmetry.

“Positioning key aspects of a landscape on points of a geometric shape help create a balanced composition.”

Rules are Made to Be Broken?

Of course while knowing the rules can be important - knowing when to use them and when to break them is a talent that great photographers generally have. Practice these techniques - but don’t get so worked up about them that they kill the creativity that you have.

Let me finish with a quote about Rules of Photography from Photographer Edward Weston to help give us a little balance on the topic:

“To consult the rules of composition before making a picture is a little like consulting the law of gravitation before going for a walk. Such rules and laws are deduced from the accomplished fact; they are the products of reflection.”

P.S. Use a high ISO to capture objects in low light situation.
P.S. Use a high shutter speed to make the image of a moving object anti-blur.
P.S. Digital zoom is just as good as real zoom and a lot cheaper.
P.S. Post processing is for people who are too stupid to set the adjustments in their camera.
P.S. Nikon is better than Canon.
P.S. Canon is better than Nikon.
P.S. Always flatter the subject, make them feel that they are the next Brad Pitt or Jolie.
P.S. Have a nice time with your camera. Care it as if its your best friend's gf.
P.S. Stop reading all these P.S.s, go and read the article!!!


Debanjan said...

Some cams cannot handle hisg ISO such as ISO1200 or ISO1600. The image turns out grainy.

Harsh said...

Hmm, you know about the technical details more buddy, thanks.