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February 17, 2014

Photography Tips, Part I

As a blogger, being good with a camera is something that will get you very far.  When coming across a new blog most everyone's eyes are always drawn to the pictures on the page.  Luckily, I have been toting around a camera long before I started this blog, and I have definitely collected some tricks for shooting a good photo or two.

I have decided to start a new series here on We the Sea where I will share some helpful hints about photography.  These tips come from lots of places, but mostly classes I have taken and articles I have read.  I'm hoping these posts will be helpful to you guys, whether you have a 'fancy' camera or not. At the very least you'll be able to give your Instagram a creative face lift :)

In the first part of this series I am going to show you guys a great tip for composing visually appealing images. This tip is called The Rule of Thirds.  Basically, when you are looking through the viewfinder of your camera, imagine a grid over your picture like this:

As you can see, this grid separates the photo into thirds vertically and horizontally. Supposedly the human eye naturally goes to the four intersections of the lines instead of the middle of the photo. The idea of the Rule of Thirds is to center the focal points in your pictures where they cross.

The lines themselves also provide useful places to align elements in your photos.  As you can see, the dog's paw and facial features hit three out of the four focal points, and the line of the floor is close to the line of the grid.

Essentially in following this rule your picture will become more balanced then if you were to, say, put the focal point right in the middle of the frame.

Now, obviously some rules are meant to be broken. I have taken a few pictures I really like that don't necessary follow the focal point rule. For example, in this shot the girl is right in the center. It isn't following the Rule of Thirds in that sense, but the columns, the stairs, and the roof do fit closely with the lines of the grid.

Hopefully this helped you guys! This is one of the few rules that I think about almost every time I take a picture. It is a very basic concept that, when embraced, can set your pictures apart from the many others out there.  Happy shooting! (haha)

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