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So what are these magical arrangements that every photographer should strive for and will guarantee success?

There are some standard ways of arranging things in a picture that have been widely used. I know I’ve made fun of them previously, but they do work. I’ve also been listening to one of them there podcasts (forgive me, I forget which one) and they were saying that you couldn’t do the Daguerreotype thing any more: you couldn’t have people stood dead-centre in the frame, staring into the distance and keeping very still. And yet you can. So besides breaking the mould we should perhaps learn first how to make it?

So here’s the starting set of standard layouts, as seen in a myriad pictures of yore (and mine).

1981 10 11a
In reading order: thirds; golden mean; line; cross; L; T or variation of cross.
1981 10 11b
H shape; C or spiral; triangle; steelyard (large mass balanced by a small one)
1981 10 111
Circle; S or snake; diagonal; box within box or frame within frame; receding planes; stairs

It’s interesting to note how many of them are the same shape as letters of the alphabet. I wonder if I could write something rude using compositions?

Why do they work? Perhaps because the visual side of our brains are looking for patterns and give your system a little pleasure kick when they find one.

Anyway – why not give one of them a go?


Author: fupduckphoto

Still wishing I knew what was going on.

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