Frame that shot perfectly every time
Framing or the composition of the shot you just took could be the thing that determines the difference between whether it looks good or great.
Framing is important as we need to consider how the viewers’ attention is drawn to the subject. So, before jumping on the technical photography band-waggon, lets look at a few easy rules for framing your subject:
1) Anywhere but the middle
As you may have heard by now, we typically want to keep the subject away from the centre and use the rule of thirds. Try moving the subject away from the centre and see how you can incorporate surroundings to accentuate the subject further – building to a more interesting photo.
Why bother moving off-centre? You’ll find the eye naturally sticks to the centre and is typically not seeing other details or context that may be around. Just by moving your subject a little to the left or right you’ll be visually balancing the image with more of a story to tell.
2) Rule of Thirds
As with anything, there is no blanket approach to the rule of thirds, however a great number of image compositions can be enhanced using the following:
If you’re going to use the middle, you may want to use this to exaggerate the symmetry on either side of the subject:
Or you could upper/lower the image to accentuate the sky or sunset:
3) Get in closer
Yes, get in closer and more intimate with your subject. For some compositions it may help to really show-off those details and add perspective (or a host of other techniques to add further context). The other reason why this tends to work well is because you’ll also be removing a vast amount of unwanted context – avoiding any further distraction for your viewers eye.
Yes, don’t be afraid to leave space. Like the image below, see how the space itself frames the subject. It may be worth placing a moving subject on the right to emphasize motion. This will guide the eye to engage with the subject further and demonstrate how the subject is engaging with the surroundings:
5) Depth of field
Ok, so now we are framing better, let’s add depth of field to the mix. You get in closer and combine the foreground/background of the image to not only frame the subject, but to guide the eye to focus on a particular area of the subject to really tell a story: