Cropping example


Composition and Post Processing - cropping, adjusting and recomposing


By Mike Bartick


In this section I would like to explain how the application of basic theory will transform snapshots into photos. A step which when practiced will come full circle and begin to help us compose better shots through the viewfinder.


Composition and the theory’s of composition are an open door for long discussion. Volumes have been written about Fibernacci’s Code, Rule of thirds etc. I am not trying to redesign or redirect any of these techniques rather to reinforce the use of these techniques in your photography.


Photos taken with a subject dead center will often lose the “Eye Appeal” of a viewer regardless of how compelling the subject matter may be. When a viewers eye falls upon a photo for the first time it will instinctually follow a natural path until the eye leaves the photo.


What we want to do is keep the eye on the photo, create a subtle flow that loops the eye back into the photo and highlight the subject


Choices on how to compose in the digital age don’t end with the release of the shutter so...


Let’s take a moment to apply some simple theory.


Example #1-


I have discovered a natural pattern created by the foot of this nudibranch.

I want to highlight the “Z” shape of this Flabellina iodinea’s foot grasping the hydroid. To accomplish that I first crop the photo.


Example #2-


After the initial crop I re-examine the photo and realize the negative space is vital for contrast in this photo.


Example #3 –


Here I offset the subject by tilting it back and now I have created a natural flow and retained the negative space to further accentuate the rich colors, visual pattern and texture.


This is only an example of what can be achieved when we apply some simple proven rules or suggestions. Granted, compositions in photography are subjective and while these basic theories are useful tools they are not always set in stone.



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