Business Insider Photo Composition Tutorial Review

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Photo: Daniel Goodman / Business Insider

A follow up to the online tutorial on the basics of photo composition, this slideshow goes through a series of photos and explains what does and doesn’t work and why.In the words of Henri Cartier-Bresson,one of the first street photographers and photojournalists:

“To me, photography is the simultaneous recognition, in a fraction of a second, of the significance of an event as well as of a precise organisation of forms which give that event its proper expression.”

When it comes to an exciting moment, get the picture first.

Worry about constructing it second...get down to the level of the action whenever you can.

Construct images around your main subject. This is a picture of the chandelier, but it also shows you the whole office and something about the office.

Framing...here the subject is reading white cards hanging on a tree, using the cards really helps highlight him.

On a wider shot, framing can be even more useful to draw the viewer's attention.

Existing elements create a natural frame.

Negative space highlights a subject.

Framing can also be important in your background...

You can relax when you have it all set up properly.

utilise elements in your scene to construct the image and focus the eye...Why does this picture not work? (Besides the fact that it is one of those annoying photos of yourself in a mirror...)

By coming in tighter and making use of existing framing the picture becomes much more engaging (even though it is still a ridiculous photo someone in the mirror).

Try to find moments that can tell their own story.

Build pictures with layers of action and meaning to develop context.

Try to think about more engaging ways to display normal scenes...

Getting very close can be a good way to achieve this.

What is your main focus in this picture...

Then eliminate distractions.

This is one way to show that an office has a bicycle rack...

This is a much more interesting way to do it.

Try and shoot things from a variety of perspectives...

Try and look at things from a completely different way. And use balancing elements (without the clouds that would be a lot of empty space).

Rule of thirds in landscape scenes...The focus in on the cityscape, so the skyline covers only the top third of the image.

A similar picture with a different story.

Patience and framing...find the right spot and wait there until the right time.

You only need the right light on the right spot...it is ok that the rest of the image is a little dark...in fact, it helps.

Where is your subject and where is the light...in this case they are in the exact right spot...concerts make it kind of easy.

In the wild, consider where light is coming from and how you can use it best in your image. Normally, you want to shoot with the light behind you but sometimes it can work to shoot into the light.

Reflections can almost always make a boring scene more interesting...and imagine what they can do to scenes that are already interesting!

This is a picture about Sennheiser who sponsored the silent disco.

This is a picture about DJ Marmon who dj'ed at the silent disco.

Look at the positioning of your subject and the background.

Make sure everything is clean and lined up. Also, when posing people have them stand with body at about a 45ยบ angle to the camera and turn their heads only towards the camera.

Watch out for things in the background...it looks like something is growing out of her chest.

Get close...

Fill the frame with your subject.

Getting close and filling the frame works especially well with food (Thanks to Kim for this shot!)

As does a shallow depth of field.

Use balance and symmetry to direct a viewers eye.

Leading lines and complex compositions can also help direct a viewer.

So go with gusto and practice more.

Need a refresher on the basic camera functions and settings?

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