Composition is an art of exclusion.
Exclude all that vies for attention other than the subject.
What do you See in this image?
The probably answers are
- A mammal sitting on the ground looking at the photographer
- Eyes are in focus
- Subject is back-lit
- There is enough space around the subject
- Centrally composed
- Blurred Background
There might be a couple more that I missed out but by and large, the biggest take away from this one is that there is nothing that is competing with my subject for attention.
The whole purpose of asking this question ‘What do you See in the image?’ is to list down all elements of the image that one can see. If nothing competes with your subject, you are good. If nothing takes too much away from the image you are good. For e.g. in the above image, the central composition is a slight issue but the eyes of the fox are so fixating that it was imperative to draw the viewer in right from the word go and the body of the fox forms a good curve to take you into the frame.
Now take a look at the following image
- A tiger sitting on the ground
- enough space in the direction that the tiger is looking at
- A tree next to the tiger
- another tree to the left of the tiger
- lovely light
The 3rd and the 4th point of this image are actually elements in the frame that are taking away the punch from the tiger. They are in focus and attracting a lot of unwanted attention.
Composition is more of an art of exclusion. Exclude all that vies for attention other than the subjects.
For every image you review, do ask yourself this question and hopefully it would help you better your composition skills.
Here are a few images for you to start asking that question
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