What is Composition The term composition means ‘putting together’ Any work of art is arranged or “put together” using conscious thought in order to communicate an idea An orderly arrangement of elements using the principles of design
Strength and Clarity For effective visual communication, your image must have both strength and clarity
Strength • Strength pertains to the ability of your image to attract the viewers attention • If you’re not able to gain attention immediately, your image will be ignored.
Clarity • Clarity refers to the ability of your image to maintain the viewer’s interest
There are several composition principles that can be used to enhance strength, clarity, and creativity in your images. • Even though the following principles have emerged for good composition and they seem rather clear- they should always be considered guidelines, not rules. • Composition is an art, not a science
Getting started • What major element in the image communicates your basic idea?
Focal Point • Compose around a Visual Center of Interest • Make something stand out from the rest of the background • Isolate the subject by throwing the background out of focus • Size • Color • Placement • Converging lines
Having too many things to look at causes fatigue in the viewer’s eye
Fill the Frame • Empty space can be effective if used right, but don’t lose details by being too far away—FILL THE FRAME! • Zoom in • Crop • As soon as you think you are close enough, GET CLOSER!
Now that you have a subject of interest, where do you place that subject within your frame?
Rule of Thirds • When we look at an image, our eyes tend to naturally go to these four areas of the frame.
By breaking our frame into thirds, horizontally and vertically, we create a grid with intersecting points where your eyes naturally tend to look.
Try placing important elements at an intersecting point on the grid • Get your subject away from the center of your frame
Avoid putting horizontal or vertical elements directly in the middle of the frame.
If the sky is your main focus, move the horizon line down low.
If the water or ground is your main focus, move the horizon up high.
The Golden Rectangle • Based on the Golden Ratio, aka the Divine Proportion, a mathematically developed formula, observed often in nature and applied to architecture and in art.
Leading the Eye/ Lines of Sight • There’s something unsettling about an image with a moving subject too close to the edge of the frame. • It feels as if the subject is going to walk right out of the image.
The same thing happens if someone is staring at something out side of the frame.
Active Space • Lead your subject • Give your subject some space to move • Lead your subject…..and give them somewhere to look
Frame • In order to draw attention to your subject, try creating a natural frame around the subject with your image. • A frame helps draw the viewer’s eye to the main subject. • Framing can also be used to create a sense of depth or to provide a context
Leading Lines Once you have established a focal point, use lines to guide the viewer through your composition and keep them in the frame
Vertical Lines • Suggest strength
Horizontal lines • Suggest openness
Curved lines • Suggest grace and beauty
Diagonal lines • Lead your eye from one corner to the opposite corner • It can transform a boring composition into a dynamic one.
S or Z lines • Guide the viewer through your image
Visual Perspective • The world doesn’t exist at just eyelevel • Use unique angles to capture images from different perspectives
Avoid Mergers • When two elements in your image overlap and blend together. • Physical object overlap awkwardly • Tonal: color of your subject blends into background • Border: object are awkwardly cut off by the edges
Formal Balance Symmetrical • Equal weight of objects
Informal Balance • Asymmetrical • A large and small focal point that are in some way joined
ODD Numbers • Having an odd number of things in a composition means your eye and brain can’t pair them up or group them easily. • There’s somehow always one thing left over, which keeps your eyes moving across the composition.