Over the next few posts we will be focusing on ways to make composition more interesting. The difference between a person with a camera and a professional photographer is the way you plan each image. Most people grab their camera, put the subject in the middle and make sure they are smiling before they click. The very first thing I look at before I capture an image is the background / environment. I know I can place my subject where I need them in order to make the image work.
In the included photo I was excited to see the lines formed from the Barn wood. By carefully placing the subject in the center of the barn and stooping down to shoot from a slightly lower angle, all of the converging lines of the barn point toward the subject and become leading lines. Your eye naturally follows leading lines into the image giving it depth and drawing the viewer into the main subject.
You can achieve this by standing in the very center of your environment. Look for ceilings with beams, pathways, streets, any place that has parallel lines leading away from you. As you look through the viewfinder, position yourself so that the lines are all pointing at your subject. Notice I didn’t say placing the subject in the middle of the picture. In fact I purposely off-set her to the right and we will discuss that more next month.
Before grabbing the next picture of your kids, pets or favorite subject, stop and consider using the environment to enhance your image instead of cluttering up just another picture.
As always, we love to hear your questions and comments at firstname.lastname@example.org. Visit our new website at jfunkphoto.com and catch up on any past posts you might have missed.