Simple Tips to Improve your Photography Eye !

May 22, 2013  •  Leave a Comment

Simple Tips to improve your photography EYE !

Everyone can take a good photograph these days especially with all the great cameras on sale you can't really go wrong.  Also making a good image is subjective to the individual. However there are some golden rules that help all the visual elements look right together.

Simple Tips to Improve your photography eye - Telling a story

Tip 1
Telling a story
This is my favourite part of photography if you can tell a story as well as artistically producing a great shot you have a winner.  The above shot in Venice is mixing old with new, I found it really funny that the Gondola man was on his mobile phone whilst dressed in such an old fashioned, traditional way.

 Love this shot of the two fathers of the bride and groom enjoying a joke on their children's big day, they teased each other all day.

This was a gem of a wedding as some of the bridesmaids were poodles, if you look closely at this photo not one person or animal is looking at the camera priceless !!  I find the photographs that I remember most are the ones that tell a story and an image is so much more powerful than words.


Simple Tips to improve your photography eye!! White Space

Tip 3
White Space

What is white space?  It is sometimes more important than the stuff that is in it.  It is the space that surrounds your main subject in a photograph.  See example :

 It is sometimes known as negative space.  It allows your eye to travel around the object and gives it a resting space..  Space calls attention to content.

 White space is just as much a shape as the main subject together they make up composition.    If the space gets filled up it feels oppressive, and a lack of negative space confuses the viewer.  It is I feel one of the most important points to deal with when creating an imageThe photograph below for example needs the space on the left to compensate for the eye to take in all the fabulous make up and costume of the model.

Simple tips to improve your photography eye! Tip 4 Colour & Tone

Tip 4
Colour & Tone

Colour and tone greatly contributes to how you feel about a photograph.  We are all conditioned to connect a colour with an abundance of psychological and emotional meaning, and this can vary tremendously between cultural groups and individuals.  For example blues and greens create a colder feel, see example below 

Whereas if you look at this next photo which is simulaar to the one above I shot at a different time of day with warmer colours such as red it creates a very different feel.
The range of tonal values also effects a photograph.  Large dark areas are are associated with strength and mood.  Whereas images that are light suggest softness and space.
Try and use colour to help emphasize a subject.  For example the image below would not have worked if the little girls dress were in another colour.  Again simplicity makes more of a powerful photograph and that rule is applied to colour aswell. 

Simple Tips to improve your photography EYE! Tip 3 The rule of thirds.



Simple Tips to improve your photography EYE! Balance


Tip 6
Again every picture is subjective yet there is always a balance when looking at a really good image, one that makes the image memorable and pleasing to the eye.  Balance dosen't mean that everything in the picture has to be in the centre quite the opposite infact, the eye takes in the camera viewpoint, tone, colour, framing and detail.

For example in this photograph the figure crossing the bridge has been captured just as they pass under the middle of the building creating a strong vertical line however either side of the figure the green colour tone balances the picture, also the red light right at the top of the picture helps the eye travel upward.

When the picture has lots of landscape detail it feels enclosed yet adding more foreground makes such a scale difference giving good depth of field.

Finally sometimes shapes and proportions are objects in their own right, sometimes how they are cropped creates balance.

When taking a photograph you have to work within a frame.  Think about what you see through the view finder or back of camera try and think of it as a blank piece of paper.
First decision is whether you want horizontal or vertical.  Your eye scans horizontal pictures best like reading of a book left to right.  Using horizontal lines or shapes within creates a strong visual look.
Vertical photographs are helped if you use lines or shapes to draw the eye in.  Also your eye makes comparisons between the top and bottom of the image, so try and visualise the same way.
You also have panoramic and square crops.  I like the square format it gives a balanced feeling even if the subject is of centre.


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