Composition is important to the design of an image; it brings all of the visual elements together in concert to express the purpose of an image. Proper composition holds the viewer in the image and prompts the viewer to look where the creator intends. Effective composition can be pleasing or disturbing, depending on the intent of the image maker.
- Good placement of the subject matter
- A very successful arrangement
- Harmonious proportions
- Using dynamic symmetry to place most important objects
- Good rhythm is created by repetition, whether it is color, spaces, moods, or divisions of the photograph
Perhaps the most well-known rule of composition is The Rule of Thirds. Derived on the theory that the human eye naturally gravitates to the top, bottom, right or left third of a visual image; this rule is a used daily as a powerful composition technique for making photos and/or visual graphics more interesting and dynamic.
Especially relevant is when intersected there are nine perfect rectangles with identical aspect ratio (shape that in this case equals a 1/9 scale to the original size). Consequently there are four points created where the thirds intersect that are referred to as motif points. A motif refers to an area of dominant interest.
The most dominant of the motif points is number 4; Notice example 2; the path of your eye as it travels through an image entering in the lower left (remember we read left to right). which is why Motif 4 is the strongest point; Most noteworthy your eye naturally passes through the fourth quadrant twice before exiting our the top right. It is for this reason why smart advertisers place the most important information they want you to see in the fourth quadrant. As a result of motif point 4 falling into the fourth quadrant of their ads are able to convey a stronger message.
Let’s face it – it’s like second nature to us. At one time or another we have centered the horizon line when framing a landscape or a horizontal oriented image. Even the church follows the rule of thirds; when is the last time you looked at a cross? Coincidence, I think not! Now let’s take a look at Leonardo da Vinci’s, example 3, The Last Supper. One of the most admired and most reproduced paintings the world has ever known follows the rule of thirds.
Photos tend to look better if the horizon falls on the upper or lower horizontal third. Depending on the subject, you want the horizon line to fall near the upper or lower third of you photos. If you are taking a photo of a mountain range or a sunset at the beach you would probably want to run the horizon line on the bottom third of the image to accentuate the sky.
This concept works for both top and bottom and should be applied to photographing people. Place the heads of people in a small group or a portrait of individual along the top third of the image and large groups along the bottom third.
Now we want to see what you do. If you are up to the task this month we are challenging our readers to PHOTO UP. The this month’s objective is to create a compelling image that utilizes rule of thirds.
The contest begins now and ends on May 3, 2017. To enter, simply visit and Like our Facebook Page and Follow us on Instagram. And now, tag yourself in your photo and use #LarmonContestROT when you post your entry at facebook.com/larmonphoto.
Winners will be selected by the number of likes your photos receive. In the event of a tie, the winner will be selected by Larmon’s esteemed President/Owner, David Harrar. The best news is the winner will receive a free enlargement any size up to 12″ x 18″.
In addition, there is good new for everyone! Everyone who enters will receive the following special offer: Come into the store and use one of our kiosks. Order/buy one enlargement any size from 5″ x 7″ up to 12″ x 18″, and receive a second of same size or smaller for FREE. Also, you will also have the opportunity to purchase as many of our Lawrence or Dennis Daniels frames you like for 20% during your visit. Don’t forget to show us your entry on our Facebook Page or your entry on Instagram to qualify for the offer. Call (215) 887-1248 or email us at [email protected] with any questions.