Questions tagged [composition-basics]

Composition basics are all about the 'rudimentary' techniques that photographers use to compose their pictures. Whether used alone, or in combination with one another, composition often makes the difference between 'good' photographs and 'great' ones.

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45 votes
3 answers

What is the "Rule of Thirds"?

Please can someone explain the "Rule of Thirds"? What is it? What does it tell me? Why is it important? What can I do with it?
AJ Finch's user avatar
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70 votes
9 answers

What is the 'Golden Ratio' and why is it better than the 'Rule of Thirds?'

Somebody recently told me that I will be able to compose more pleasing pictures if I use the Golden Ratio instead of the Rule of Thirds, and that the Rule of Thirds was an inferior way to compose ...
Jay Lance Photography's user avatar
33 votes
4 answers

What is the 'Diagonal Method' and should I use it instead of 'The Rule of Thirds?'

I recently was in a discussion with a photography mentor who asserted that over the years he has composed most of his award-winning and/or 'most popular' photographs using the 'Diagonal Method,' and ...
Jay Lance Photography's user avatar
6 votes
4 answers

How do I compose photos with prime lenses?

I own a Sony NEX-5R, with two prime lenses: 19mm F2.8 Sigma, and 35mm F1.8 Sony. How do I best compose photos with prime lenses like these? I can think of a few: Walk towards or away from the ...
Kartick Vaddadi's user avatar
44 votes
18 answers

What are common beginner mistakes in photography?

What are common mistakes seen in images taken by beginning photographers? For example, a friend of mine pointed out that the horizon was not straight in one of my images, and now I see it everywhere!...
12 votes
3 answers

When should I break the rule of thirds?

When photographers talk about the rule of thirds, they say sometimes they will break the rule and still the photo will have great composition. When should I stick with the rule of thirds and when ...
K'''s user avatar
  • 6,497
47 votes
2 answers

What is the Rule of Odds?

In furthering my reading on photographic composition I came across a compositional technique called the "Rule of Odds." What is the "Rule of Odds"? Why is it important? How do I apply it to my ...
Jay Lance Photography's user avatar
7 votes
3 answers

Subject alongside, at the intersection or inside lines in composition rules?

I have been reading different articles on photo composition. These discuss rules of thirds, triangles, and golden ratio, each suggesting different and contradicting approaches. Some of them say to ...
Pablo's user avatar
  • 876
29 votes
2 answers

What is Bakker's Saddle?

I was perusing a book called "Success in Print Competition for Professional Photographers" and one section referred to a composition technique called Bakker's Saddle. Three related questions: What is ...
Jay Lance Photography's user avatar
26 votes
5 answers

How to create an eye-path?

Reading about photography, I have now and then stumbled on recommendations to "create a path for viewer's eye", or to "lead it through the picture" without any specific guidelines how to achieve that. ...
Imre's user avatar
  • 32k
15 votes
2 answers

What is headroom as it relates to photographic composition?

With photographic composition I often hear people talk about 'leaving enough headroom' for portrait photographs. What is headroom? How can I properly apply it to my photographs? What are the ...
Jay Lance Photography's user avatar
12 votes
3 answers

What are other popular composition techniques in addition to The Rule of Thirds?

I always hear a lot about The Rule of Thirds. I'd like to know more about other 'tried-and-true' composition techniques (not special effects) that can make a photo more interesting. In particular, I'...
Ian Felton's user avatar
9 votes
4 answers

What kind of Compositional Elements are used in this pic?

I found this pic in internet and I really liked it. As having interest in photography, I was wondering what kind of composition rules was used in this pic, for example whether it is a contrast, ...
Sharad Kumar's user avatar
9 votes
1 answer

What is diagonal dominance?

In another question, rule of Diagonal Dominance was mentioned. I had never heard of such rule, so I'd like to know... What is rule of diagonal dominance about? How to apply it in photography? When ...
Imre's user avatar
  • 32k
-2 votes
7 answers

How do I make a landscape photo containing many important elements feel well composed?

On the question "Does this sunrise photograph have a problem with white balance?", there is a comment by Rob: I know this Q is not asking for image critique and although I like the image I think ...
Aquarius_Girl's user avatar