Westminster fountain at sunset

by Jorge Córdoba

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34

The rule of thirds is actually the golden ratio. It's a number that divides a line into roughly 2/3 and 1/3. In photography it's used to make images more dynamic. If you place the subject in the center of the image, it's percieved as balanced and perhaps dull (unless the subject is very strong in itself), while if you place the subject at one side you add a ...


29

The rule of thirds is a popular and common compositional guideline for photography and for painting. In its most basic form, the rule of thirds suggests that dividing areas within the frame into thirds is more successful than an even division. For example, the sky should occupy the top third (or two-thirds) of the frame, rather than sharing the space evenly ...


27

The rule of thirds suggest that you should divide the image area into a 3x3 grid, and then position compositional elements of the image along the lines between those cells, preferably where vertical and horizontal lines meet: |---|---|---| | | | | |---X---X---| | | | | |---X---X---| | | | | |---|---|---| The rule of thirds is a ...


14

The rule of thirds to me is a rule of thumb, a reminder not to mindless frame my subject dead centre of the frame, or else I will probably end up with static or boring images overall. As a beginner, it's a good rule to keep in mind. Not to blindly follow, but to help encourage you to try different framing, perspectives and so forth. As an experienced ...


13

The reason you see conflicting information when researching is because these rules are slippery. None of them have a strong backing in science, and their history in aesthetics is less important than in popular myth. There's no evidence whatsoever that anyone used the golden ratio in art before the 20th century, but people have heard the story so many times ...


13

The most important thing to remember is that the rule of thirds is more like what you'd call "guidelines" than actual rules. Even if you're familiar with the rule, I suggest refreshing yourself on the background of the rule of thirds and where it comes from. It contains less ancient wisdom than many people assume. So, since there's no hard and fast rule, ...


8

For specific effects The bottom line is that you are the boss and if you think it looks good then don't worry what the rest of us think! Given that, here are some suggestions... Placing a subject in the centre can: give an impression of strength and stability. (especially if you shoot looking up at something / someone). emphasise symmetry in the ...


7

The rule of thirds is a simplification of the golden ratio. Basically if you put something on 3rd's line like a person's eye or something on a horizon, the composition of the image will often conform to the golden ratio. The golden ratio occurs often in nature such as conch or snail shells, flower petals, and so on. Since it's identification (or ...


7

As long as the subject is supposed to be the little phone-booth-monument-firepit-grill-whatever-thing in the lower right, then yes, it's a good example of the rule of thirds. Unfortunately, it's also not a great picture. The rule of thirds is just one compositional technique, and it works only to the extent that it supports the technical and artistic aims ...


6

As others have noted, there often are focus points near to the rule of thirds intersection points, but they aren't always precisely in that location. There might be some consumer demand for it, but there are two major reasons why not, both answered, I think, by my answers to What is the “Rule of Thirds”? and What is the 'Golden Ratio' and why is it better ...


6

I am not 100% sure what you mean. Looking at the viewfinder of my 500D, it looks like (Via Bob Atkins) If I take the liberty to add "thirds lines", it looks like this: Unless you mean "100% spot on!", this looks very much like spots in the intersections of thirds lines. (My handiwork is a bit shoddy on the second picture, I have to admit as well.)


5

I'd say it all depends on the artists vision rather more so than any technical limitation: I am in the middle of taking macro pics of matchbox toy cars I had as a child. The style I am going for is lighting just the car over a 100% black background and shooting at f32 (and getting the DOF covering a good 1/4 to 1/3 of a car's length). Because of the ...


5

1/3 rules is used in macro. Not necessary by person starting in the field as you need experience to be able to do some composition with a living insect but I think that some very interesting macro are catchy due to their composition and some (most) follow the thirds rules. As example here are picture picked in today 500px flow... ...


3

I don't think so. The reason is that rule of thirds relates to the positioning of your subject, but the subject itself has to be isolated by some means - contrast, color, focus blur, motion blur - anything to make the subject, well... a subject. In your picture I'd say the subject is the overexposed center as well as the two objects along with that. It ...


3

Reexamine your understanding of the rule. Often, the rule is illustrated with over-simplified examples so that the concept can be understood. As an example, an object is often placed against a background so that the subject is a third into the shot, say. In a more subtle case, blood platelet coagulation comparison can be made with an open vein at one point ...


3

A design teacher from a Danish design school lectured us at a phd course about composition of our scientific powerpoint presentations. He also mentioned that we should never place two figures side by side, but one or three. He used an example of 2 vs 3 candle lights as well. He argued that it had to do with how our eyes move around when inspecting the scene. ...


3

The above answers lay out various reasons why: 1. Artistic Vision, 2. Subject and Background issues, 3. A novice's ability to use composition rules etc. I am responding just from personal experience. I started shooting Macro in August 2006, and it forms a significant portion of my work. I also have had some training through classes and reading and ...


3

There are macro shoots that rule of thirds are applied successfully but there are reasons for it to be not applied. The subject might be interesting enough that no additional composition technique is needed. The shallow depth of field might limit the options for the composition There are also several reasons for the centre composition Lenses tend to ...


3

I think the reason it seems like they don't is that macro tends to be focused on a single subject that is the bulk of the image, so most Macro shots favor centered subject over thirds based composition, but there certainly are examples where the rule of thirds is used in the composition of a macro shot and there is no formal or technical reason why it can't ...


3

Those rules (and many more like them) are not actually rules, they are are more of an OK starting point. That is, if you don't have any unique composition that works well with your current scene than placing the subject at about 1/3 of the way (or on the golden ratio line, a diagonal, triangle, etc.) in will create a more interesting image than if it's at ...


2

If upper branches of a tree are more important, use the bottom line. If on shot you have nice shadow of this tree, use upper. This is dependant on your subject. Here my simple sample, if somebody don't know how tree looks ;) Here is "like a" rule of third sample, because pure rule is mostly boring.


2

There are even more options. Horizon may be diagonal, vertical, it may be upside down. As Matt said, please do not consider any "rules" to be rules for yourself :) One more thing: if the horizon is just slightly non-horizontal, it often grabs viewers' attention and "feels awkward". I'm not saying it's a bad thing but it may take viewer's attention off from ...


2

The Rule of Thirds isn't anything like a scientific 'law': it is just a guideline, a rule of thumb. Whether or not a photo taken using it is 'better' than another without is subjective. It is also only one of a number of similar guidelines such as the golden ratio and splitting the scene into triangles. It is up to you as the photographer to decide what ...


2

There is much science behind the Golden Ratio (Golden Section), of which the Rule of Thirds is a simple approximation. The ratio (known as phi) of approximately 1.618 occurs time and time again in nature and mathematics. The question is if there is any science behind the aesthetics of that ratio. Sure it occurs in nature, the Greeks thought the ratio was ...


1

You will have to observe that different camera makes have different amount and type of autofocus points. Most entry level DSLR cameras have only one cross-type autofocus points in the middle, and people usually focus with that and then recompose even though there are additional focus points available. More serious DSLR cameras have more focus points, but ...


1

It's possible that we're conditioned to find images composed with the rule of thirds pleasing or "correct". It's very prominent in historical works of art & architecture, modern photography, design, etcetera. I've even observed people being criticized for not following it in photo competitions. It could be considered sacred simply because of conditioning ...


1

They are less rules and more guidelines. If you are inexperience with composition then following the guidelines and looking at how others followed or broke the rules will aid you in becoming a better photographer. Depending on the shot it may be better to not follow the rules, but until one is more experienced both shooting and having critically evaluated ...


1

The best way to know how, and when, to break the rule is to consume photography - eat up other people's works and develop your taste, find what you like and who you like. Soon, you'll develop your eye to the point where you know how to compose a scene to best do that subject the way you wanted it. The other suggestions are good, for giving you a general ...



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