Rule of thirds

A good Landscape image is one which invites the eye to move around the picture, thereby exploring every bit of it and soaking in the beauty as it wanders around. Now what does that mean? and how to apply it in practice?

All people when presented with an image for the first time, invariably look at the centre of the frame as that’s how our minds have been programmed to look. It is due to this reason alone that most novice photographers “plonk” their subjects and make images with the subject at the dead center. This also affects the viewer. When viewing a “plonked” image the mind draws attention to the subject straight on, there by reducing the interest in the viewer to explore the rest of the picture. Viewer sees the main subject and then forgets about it. Nothing excites him/her. Its like giving away the climax of a thriller novel in the very first page! Now who would want to read the reminder of the novel?

On the other hand, if the main subject is placed off the center, then, the viewer’s eye quite naturally goes to the center first and having not found the main subject of interest is forced to look around the image “exploring” the whole scene to try and identify the subject. This accounts for a much better viewing pleasure and also makes the viewer more aware of the different elements present in the frame.

Science has it, based on this concept, that a frame looks most powerful when the subject is placed at one thirds of the frame on either sides (left or right, top or bottom).

So remember this the next time you making images, do not PLONK and try and make an effort to place the subject off center.

Posted By : Sriharsha Ganjam

One thought on “Rule of thirds

  • February 2, 2010 at 2:09 PM
    Permalink

    Good one. Will try to focus on entire pic 🙂

    Reply

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