What is Composition

In this article, we will tell you what composition is, why it is needed in photography, and how to use composition rules correctly.

What is composition

In order for photographs to be interesting and find a positive emotional response from those who will view them, it is necessary to know the laws of composition.

Composition in photography is the harmonious arrangement of all elements of the image in the picture. If the composition is set correctly in the frame, then the viewer will look at the photo easily and naturally, receiving aesthetic pleasure and feeling the logical connection between the objects in the frame.

composition rules

There are different composition techniques for taking photographs. The main ones will be discussed below.

Of great importance is the plot center and balance. Before you take a picture, you need to determine the main object, which will be the semantic or plot center.

the main object in photography

Another important task of the photographer is the choice of the background. Background objects should not take the eye away from the main object. For example, if the main subject is light, then the background should be darker and vice versa. Very attractive are those photographs in which you can feel the depth of space. In addition, using an open aperture, you can blur the background, which will further highlight the object you need from everything else.

composition in photography

Framing is a simple and powerful compositional technique. The essence of this technique is to place the main object of the picture in a kind of frame from other objects in the photo. This will help highlight the main subject.

Various objects can be used as a frame – a window, an arch, gaps between tree branches, waves, rays of light, and so on. Using this technique helps to focus the viewer’s attention and place accents. Framing involves working with a multi-layered composition, and the frame can act as a foreground or background, while a sense of volume and depth appears in the frame.

framing in photography composition

If the photographer wants to add dynamics to the frame, then the diagonal method should be used. A photo that has a diagonal element has more power and dynamism. If you plan to capture a landscape and at the same time make it more dynamic, then you can set diagonally the linear elements that are present in it, for example, roads, waterways, coastlines, fences.

diagonal composition

The viewer’s eye is attracted by repetitive motifs, patterns or ornaments. This repetition of uniform textures, shapes, objects and colors is called a pattern. This method is very effective in composing a photograph.

pattern in photography composition

An important role in the composition is played by the so-called negative or negative space. This is the area surrounding the subject of the image. Negative space is used to create certain emotions and allows you to effectively emphasize shapes and sizes.

Negative space in photography

Symmetry is a powerful technique in composition. In photographs, symmetry is vertical, horizontal and radial. Symmetry in photography can be used in combination with other techniques, as shown in the photo below.

symmetry in photography

An important compositional technique in photography and other art forms is the golden ratio and the rule of thirds. The golden ratio is the division of the frame into parts in such a way that the larger part is related to the smaller one, as the entire frame is to the larger one.

the rule of thirds

For example, it is desirable to place the horizon line along the line that divides the frame into thirds. The main object in the frame can be placed at the intersection of these lines.

Filling the frame is also one of the composition techniques. Tight framing involves a strong emphasis on the subject, when there is no excess free space.

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