Outdoor Family Photography

Rule Of Thirds Explained

Think of a picture, divided into 9 equal parts (with 2 horizontal lines and 2 vertical lines). The key to this rule is that important elements are positioned along the lines, or where they meet.

Rule of thirds

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As long as the composition is off-centre, it will appear more pleasing to the eye and looks more natural as compared to objects that are placed right in the middle of the frame. When this happens, the emphasis that the main object may overshadow other components of the picture, hence lending it a very unbalanced feel. Hence, for objects to look more realistic, position them at the intersection of the lines.

This technique also allows the photographer to make creative use of negative space, the empty areas around your subject.

This rule helps you take eye-catching pictures by using one of the most effective rules of composition.

If you want to take pictures that have a “wow” factor built in them, the Rule of Thirds is the composition secret you need to take advantage of!

To use the rule of thirds, imagine four lines, two lying horizontally across the image and two vertical creating nine even squares. Some images will look best with the focal point in the center square, but placing the subject off center at one of the intersecting points of the imaginary lines, will often create a more aesthetically composed photograph.

When a photograph is composed using the rule of thirds the eyes will wander the frame. A picture composed by the rule of thirds is usually more interesting and pleasing to the eye.

While a good rule to follow, it should not be used without careful thought or planning. Especially when taking photographs that contain  main subjects i.e. people or animals, this technique should be used more as a “rule of thumb” rather than a hard-and-fast rule that cannot be adapted into different pictorial settings.

However, this rule is effective in that it will provide a picture that is more balanced and provides more emotions for the people viewing it from a third person point-of-view.


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