Tips & Tricks of the Trade: How to take Better Photos

Lynn ComoTips and Tricks of the Trade

10 Simple Composition Rules to Take Better Photos

Posted on the Make It From Your Heart Blog by Close To My Heart, August 2019

Photo Composition #ctmh #closetomyheart #photography #photos #photocomposition #camera #scrapbooking #memorykeeping

Here are the first 5 rules.  You can practice these first five now and stay tuned for the next 5 rules in a few days.  Small bite size pieces might help you with your photography and nabbing those better shots!  Enjoy!

Do you want to be a better memory keeper but  struggle with taking “good” photos? If your answer is yes, then today’s message is for you! Photography is both an art form and a skill. As a form of self-expression, sometimes we’re not quite sure how to express what we really want to—at least not in a pretty way. Luckily, the skill part of capturing a great photo can be taught! Today we are reviewing a few basic rules of photography composition so that you can capture all of those picture-perfect moments life throws your way in photos you will be proud to scrapbook!

1. The Rule of Thirds

Photo Composition #ctmh #closetomyheart #photography #photos #photocomposition #camera #scrapbooking #memorykeeping #ruleofthirds

Photo Composition #ctmh #closetomyheart #photography #photos #photocomposition #camera #scrapbooking #memorykeeping #ruleofthirds

The Rule of Thirds is a fairly standard rule most photographers try to follow. Imagine that your shot has a 3 x 3 grid over it, then line up the main focus of your photograph at one of the intersection points on the grid. In these photos, the photographer has applied the Rule of Thirds by placing the cat’s nose and the people’s heads in the right-middle square of this imaginary grid. This way, the main focus of the photo isn’t dead center in the middle of the shot, which helps to visually expand the space.

2. Leading Lines

Photo Composition #ctmh #closetomyheart #photography #photos #photocomposition #camera #scrapbooking #memorykeeping #leadinglines

Photo Composition #ctmh #closetomyheart #photography #photos #photocomposition #camera #scrapbooking #memorykeeping #leadinglines2

When you line up your shot, you may want to look for a leading line. Leading lines are visual linesthat lead to the main subject of an image. Leading lines can extend through your photo and create depth. In these examples, you can see how the photographer used the pathway and trail to direct attention from the edges of the photographs to their main subject.

3. Natural Framing

Photo Composition #ctmh #closetomyheart #photography #photos #photocomposition #camera #scrapbooking #memorykeeping #naturalframing

Photo Composition #ctmh #closetomyheart #photography #photos #photocomposition #camera #scrapbooking #memorykeeping #ruleofthirds

Framing doesn’t have to be something that happens only after your pictures have been developed or printed. Finding a natural frame and positioning your subject inside it is a great way to draw the shot together and add a more professional feel to your photography. Here, you can see how the woman’s hands and the wall provide a frame for the most important parts of the photos.

4. Perspective

Photo Composition #ctmh #closetomyheart #photography #photos #photocomposition #camera #scrapbooking #memorykeeping #perspective

Photo Composition #ctmh #closetomyheart #photography #photos #photocomposition #camera #scrapbooking #memorykeeping #perspective

Photography is largely about perspective. Slight changes in perspective can make or break a photo. If you aren’t happy with the way your photo is looking, try switching up your position to alter the perspective of the shot. Whether you shoot your photo from above or below, as you can see in these examples, switching up your angle to get a different perspective can help you take your photography to all new heights.

5. Exposure

Photo Composition #ctmh #closetomyheart #photography #photos #photocomposition #camera #scrapbooking #memorykeeping #exposure

Photo Composition #ctmh #closetomyheart #photography #photos #photocomposition #camera #scrapbooking #memorykeeping #exposure

Exposure is a vital part of any photograph. If a photo is over-exposed, everything will be washed out in bright light, making the subject nearly invisible. On the other hand, if a photo is under-exposed, everything in your shot will appear shadowy and dark. By finding a good balance, you can highlight your subject while preserving the beauty of your background. For this tip, we’ve provided an example of bad exposure with excess light to show you what you don’t want to happen. We’ve also provided a good example with a balance of light and shadow. Finding this balance may take some practice, but it’s definitely worth it to add greater polish to your photos.

Stay tuned for the next 5 rules … in a few days.  Try some of these on for size and see if they are working for you!