Sunday, December 5, 2010

Composition Part 1--The Rule of Thirds

Which one of these two pictures is more interesting and visually appealing to you? 
Did you answer the first one? 
Do you know why you chose the first one?

Most average people who have not had photography lessons tend to center their point of interest in the middle of the photo.  However, if you want a more visually appealing photo, follow the Rule of Thirds. 

The Rule of Thirds says that a photo or image should be divided into nine equal parts.  Three equal horizontal, and three equal vertical parts.  It is the first thing photographers learn about composition of photos.   
By placing your points of interest or subjects along the lines or at the intersection of the lines, you create a more interesting, visually appealing photo. 

Let's apply the Rule of Thirds to the two photos above:
Notice the horizon in the first photo falls along the bottom line vs in the middle of the photo in the second photo.  This makes the photo more visually interesting and appealing.

Here's another example:
The first photo is fine and certainly doesn't look bad.  The second photo however, is more interesting.  You are drawn to Tottie's eyes. 
Not only is Tottie on one of the lines in the second photo, her eyes are close to an intersection which is visually pleasing. 

If you are new to learning photography and composition, try following the Rule of Thirds and see how your photos improve.  Once you've got it down, we'll learn how to break the rules.

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Short Leg Lucy said...

I remember reading this a while back on Digital photography and just loooooved that post. very good info :]

Ashley said...

I was just learning about this last week when I finally decided to watch the tutorial DVD for my camera (which I got a year ago)! I had never heard this before...very interesting!

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