Archive for » December, 2009 «

The Importance of Composition

According to Webster’s definition, composition means arrangement: the orderly putting together of parts to make a unified whole. There are not really any binding rules to composition, rather lose guidelines and some basic principles. What do we include and what do leave out in order to create the most harmonious impression?  When a photographer looks at a scene and automatically sees it as if it were through a viewfinder, he or she  knows the format of  the photograph and puts invisible borders around that scene. While an artist is unrestricted and has complete freedom in creating a painting or piece of art, a photographer has to use what is in front of him or her, which makes that person a judge of the importance of certain elements of composition. A good photograph makes you want to explore it and keeps your focus on it. Elements of color, light, and contrast may play a definitive role in this challenge. Depth of field lets you focus on important parts and ignore visually not so inviting areas of an image. Whenever possible, I like to create some sort of tension between foreground and background as well as lighter and darker areas. In order to convey  a scene in a vivid manner, at least some of these ideas have to be included and sometimes, less equals more. Once in a while I take a walk  in the Everglades where there are long stretches of grassy areas interrupted by small islands with bushes and trees and a beautiful clear sky. This is when I just look at nature and see it in form of photographs. I know exactly where I would crop and how I would position my camera. I am sure that some of you had a moment or two when you said  “this is picture perfect” and this is exactly the impression,  a well composed image should provide.