Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Throwing It Off

There is a rule we follow.  It's a good rule.  And for those of you who know me, you know that I like rules.  I don't know why, but there is security for me in knowing boundaries and recommendations.  And here's one I like to follow - The Rule of Thirds.

Here's how it works - at it's most basic, the subject to be highlighted should rest upon one of the intersections.  Take a minute to look at that diagram.  If you can imagine these intersections when you look through your viewfinder, then you'll find that your images will naturally be much more appealing. 

This is composition.  It's not hard - and it really REALLY does help your images feel stronger. 

(Image from Wikipedia Commons)
In this image you see that the horizon is on the 'horizon line' and the tree is at an intersection.  Basically, you don't want a horizon line cutting your image in half.  To take this one step further, you don't want your subject sitting right in the middle of the picture.  That's why they feel flat when you look at them.  For some reason, following this little tip gets life into your picture.  It's like 'Photo Fung Shui!'  (lame again, I know). 

Disclaimer: I have LOVED this rule.  And I have also disobeyed it at times.  I will say, however, that my favorite images have the energy and tension that follow the rule. 

So here's your challenge - pick up your camera.  It doesn't have to be hard.  If your subject doesn't take the entire picture, then throw them into 2/3 of the view finder.  Examples, please:

So try it.  Pick up that camera and try to imagine the grid.  Take some pictures where your subject isn't in the dead center of your viewfinder.  Let your artistic side come out.  

Putting together yesterday and today - get an angle where the background is good, and bring your camera to your face.  Put that subject in 2/3 of the viewfinder and HAVE FUN! 

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