Composition: Simplify Your Subject

Last month I shared a printable with you with 9 points on improving your composition.  Over the coming months I will go over each of the points more in depth starting with Simplify Your Subject.

Some of the key points you could use to simplifying your subject include:

  • changing perspective to improve the composition
  • avoiding things breaking into the frame
  • simplify the the background where possible
  • try to eliminate unnecessary objects from the photo (cars, power lines, poles etc)
  • use selective focus to make the main image stand out from the background
  • know when to break this rule to make a better photograph

Below are some examples of shots I have take and what I have done to create a more simplified image.

In this first two images you can see how there are distracting red flowers in the corner of the frame, if I had noticed at the time I could have moved slightly to remove them, but I didn’t.  Instead a little post processing to make the image black and white is a great solution.

In this second comparison a change of perspective and lens greatly improved the image.  In the first one there are wires in the foreground and distractions in the background, by simply changing my lens and moving to an open window instead of the fence I was able to capture the tigers playing in a more intimate way.

Finally in these last two images you can see how using a shallow depth of field can simplify the image by blurring distracting details.

Other Posts on Composition
Rule of Thirds
Leading Lines & S-Curve
Beware of Mergers
Symmetry & Balance
Change Perspective
Composition Printable

9 thoughts on “Composition: Simplify Your Subject

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