Basic Composition: Cropping

gerund or present participle: cropping
cut off
After derailing a bit from our Back to Basics: Photo Composition, I decided we should get back to our list.

To crop is to cut the image tight to eliminate any distractions so the viewer’s primary focus is the subject. It is a very powerful tool that, if done correctly, will create a greater impact in your images; it will strengthen your image.

Basic tips for cropping

Straight lines – Using the Rule of Thirds (Rule #1 on the Photo Composition post), I make sure my vertical and horizontal lines are straight. There are times though, that I prefer to have diagonal lines.

Open space – Eliminate it. By eliminating open space, you’ll make your subject is the focal point. Don’t be afraid to crop. The less open space, the more you’ll add dramatic feel to your image. Also, there will be a time when you can not get too close to your subject, so you’ll shoot from a distance – don’t you worry. Cropping will help you eliminate the unwanted space.

882954_10151528198783023_123871540_oLeading lines – I absolutely LOVE lines. They create an artistic feel to your images – especially when you’re capturing nature, buildings, bridges, or streets. However, leading lines sometimes tend to get lost in an image when capturing a person in action. Keep an eye out for leading lines next time you crop. It will help draw the viewer’s eye in a striking way.

Cropping is an artful composition. At the end of the day, these are just basic tips that will help you understand the world of cropping a bit better. If you want to break the rules to create better art, by all means, please do!

“Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist.”

– Pablo Picasso

As always, I’d love to see what you create. Please leave a comment with the link where I can follow your work.

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