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Canon® EOS Digital Rebel XTi/400D Digital Field Guide by Charlotte K. Lowrie

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Chapter 6. Composition Basics

In This Chapter

  • Understanding composition

  • Using the rule of thirds

  • Symmetry

  • Composing with color

  • Controlling the focus and depth of field

  • Defining space and perspective

While the technical aspects of an image are important, image content and composition carry equal or greater weight. After all, a technically questionable image with a compelling subject and composition can ace a technically perfect image with a mundane subject and uninteresting composition. In this section of the book, you can brush up on composition guidelines and principles.

Composition is a skill that intrigues and challenges even the most experienced photographers. Taken at ISO 100, f/5.6, 1/800 second using a Canon EF 100mm, f/2.8 Macro USM lens.

Figure 6.1. Composition is a skill that intrigues and challenges even the most experienced photographers. Taken at ISO 100, f/5.6, 1/800 second using a Canon EF 100mm, f/2.8 Macro USM lens.

Understanding Composition

Composition is the aspect of photography that many photographers strive to master. Mastering composition, however, remains an ongoing challenge for most photographers. While composition principles can help you design an image, in the end, your personal aesthetic is the final judge. After all, for every rule of composition, there are galleries filled with pictures that break the rules, and they succeed famously.

Most photographers would agree that, when in doubt, it's best to stick with a simple composition. Simple compositions offer the advantage of being easy for the viewer to "read," and that characteristic often ...

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