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Composition Techniques

Updated: Jun 12, 2023

Composition Techniques in Photography

Your goal when composing a photograph should be point to something. You want your viewer to look at what you’re trying to show them. One way you can do this by cutting out all the clutter of the world and just showing them what you want them to see. A few ways you can achieve this in #photography include getting closer to your subject, using a longer focal-length lens for a narrower field of view, using depth-of-field #DOF to isolate your subject from other elements in the scene, or using shadow to hide things that do not contribute to the message you are trying to give.

Cropping Distractions

Just look at both images and small effort in cropping out distraction on right angles made a big difference here to get something amazing from ordinary looking frame.

On Camera composition which includes elements creating distractions in frame.

Image-A: Without cropping of frame.

Image-B: After cropping Image-A this frame looks more interesting to eyes.

Leading Lines

One simple way to use lines is for their drawing power. Lines that are simply graphic can be used to lead the viewer around your image. These are called Leading Lines. When you’re looking at a scene and deciding how to compose it, consider what your subject is first and then consider what elements in the scene might draw the viewer towards that subject. Can you find a receding line, like a fence that draws you to the old house on the hill? Maybe there’s a crack in the concrete leading to a flower growing at the base of a wall. The viewer’s eye will naturally follow lines so they can be very useful in directing people to what you want them to look at.

Below image is perfect example for leading lines #leadingline where subject here 'insect' not around Rule Of Thirds #ROT we will discuss later but even without that it is only leading lines are helping here to create a balanced composition.

Rule of Thirds

This is one of the most talked-about composition techniques. Perhaps because it is so simple to implement, but also because of what it suggests. All you need to do is to divide your frame vertically into three equal parts and horizontally into three equal parts. By placing your subject on one of the four points where these dividing lines meet, you will encourage the viewer away from the center of the frame. This forces them to look around the image and makes your composition more interesting.

On below image I kept lines intersection of lines (focal point) around one eye with purpose (as we can't cover both eyes ;) "a funny joke" but there was thought process behind the decision and the goal here to let viewer first feel the eye of bird, then bird body/texture.


Evenly spaced, identical (or very similar) objects can be arranged to create #repetitive #patterns in your photographs. Things like fence-posts, the lines of a pedestrian crossing, an orchard of trees. Anything that can be arranged into a repeating pattern can bring a great intensity to a #photograph. Depending on the subject matter, it may be calming, like a row of pillars on a building, or alarming, like endless rows of people walking in time.

Below image is great example to present here for repetitive patterns and frame as whole is depending on the pattern to add interest to viewer eyes.

Putting Things in the Way

One technique for adding #depth to our images is layering things over the top of other things. Simply put, you can cover part of your frame with something closer to the #camera in order to give the illusion of depth.

You can use the leaves of a tree to frame a couple in the park, empty beer glasses on a bar while the bartender pours fresh ones in the background, or an audience listening to a speaker on stage at a corporate event can make a good frame that doesn’t simply show the speaker out of context. All of these things not only fill your frame with interesting elements, they further the #story you’re trying to tell.

Below image captured while having this #composition thought in mind where I was capturing cultural #festival and during street performance I kept looking at #performer for intense moments where they stop for something. Here is the image in front of you telling all story around that time and adding #people around subject helped add some sense of depth in frame.

One more thing, if you want to join me and thousands of other photographers around the world, make sure to click here to join my FREE private Facebook group.


Of course, these are not the only elements of composition and they are only the basics. There is only so much of this huge topic that we can cover in this article. I hope that the actionable points here can improve your composition.

I would like to see your view in comments for this post if you have found information useful.

Also share your feedback on this first ever post under SPW Photography Blog.

Happy learning to all readers and keep create - inspire - share your work with photography lovers.

With this note I would say good-bye and I will promise to keep continue all efforts for making photography learning more easy with post like this we just gone through above.

Author: Sumit Dhuper

You could follow author work on Facebook and Instagram

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