Skip Navigation

Off-Centre Photography

Travel Forums Travel Photography Off-Centre Photography

Page
  • 1
  • 2

Last Post

1. Posted by Wocca (Inactive 3745 posts) 11y

I read once, and have since always been of the impression that the subject of a photo should be in the centre of the shot. Recently, I've been told this is not so by someone who has studied photography. Any comments so I'll know where to focus in future?

2. Posted by DevonTom (Full Member 20 posts) 11y

Hey man,

The person who studied photography should know better than to generalise like that! To start with, it completely depends! To quote Ansel Adams:

"There are no rules for good photographs, there are only good photographs."

However, that's not particularly helpful. There are compositional techniques you can use. One of the most basic is "The Rule of Thirds".

Doing a google search will find you plenty of articles on how to use the technique. This is one of the slightly better ones:

http://photoinf.com/Golden_Mean/John_Longenecker/Rule_of_Thirds.htm

But again, some of the most effective photographs come from compositional rules being broken.

For instance, if you want to exaggerate symmetry in a photograph you can split a photo down the middle, which aesthetically can look rather odd which is why it's "against the rules"...but it can make the photograph a particularly effective one.

My advice: Experiment! If you have a digital camera then you're laughing. Pick just one subject to photograph, be it a pet, a flower, a person, a landscape, and try out as many different compositions as your memory card will allow. Which ones work? Which ones don't? If they don't, why not?

But most importantly, pick the ones which look good to your eyes, and try and reproduce them. By analysing what you like and why, you can reproduce it more easily. Work on what you like. That way, you'll develop an individual style, and you'll have friends swooning over your imaginative efforts!

You're welcome to have a look at some of my photography at
http://www.usefilm.com/photographer/35364.html. Some of the images are composed classically, some are the opposite. It might give you an idea about what you like compositionally and what you don't. But that's just my stuff, I really recommend looking at the work of the masters. Some names for you: Ansel Adams, Man Ray, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Bill Brandt...Stick with it! After a while you'll develop a natural eye and feel for composition.

Good luck...

Cheers,
Tom

3. Posted by Wocca (Inactive 3745 posts) 11y

Thanks Tom,
You've really clarified this one for me

4. Posted by DevonTom (Full Member 20 posts) 11y

Haha, glad to be of service

5. Posted by GregW (Travel Guru 2635 posts) 11y

It depends on what the backdrop is for the shot. If I am in a fantasic place, I will put the main subject off to the left or the right of the shot so that viewers can see the background. This is great for those "this is me on the plains of the Serengeti" shots. That way you can see me (off to the right of the shot), but the plains take as big a part of the photo. If the subject is in the middle, then the background tends to be just that, background.

Greg

6. Posted by Wocca (Inactive 3745 posts) 11y

Quoting DevonTom

You're welcome to have a look at some of my photography at
http://www.usefilm.com/photographer/35364.html. Some of the images are composed classically, some are the opposite. It might give you an idea about what you like compositionally and what you don't.

I'm impressed

7. Posted by DevonTom (Full Member 20 posts) 11y

Thanks man:)

8. Posted by samsara_ (Travel Guru 5353 posts) 11y

I second that.

Cool shots.;)

9. Posted by Cupcake (Travel Guru 8468 posts) 11y

Your talent is obvious. Have you studied photograpy?
Those are beautiful pictures :)

10. Posted by Brendan (Respected Member 1824 posts) 11y

Really nice shots!