Photography as an art depends on the photographer’s ability to see as the camera sees.  Cameras only see and record parts of the larger scene and reduce it to 2D, frames it, and captures it. It does not have the ability to discriminate as we do. When a photographer looks at a scene, its only the important elements that the photographer wants in the shot and more or less ignores the rest. Good pictures don’t happen by chance. Basic principles of composition aid in the process of a good photograph. The way the elements are arranged within a picture are eye catching and show good composition. Developing these photographic composition skills lead to photographs that suggest movement, life, depth, shape, and form, recreating the original scene.

These are all principles and elements of photography:

  • Center of Interest
  • Subject Placement
  • Simplicity
  • Viewpoint and Camera Angle
  • Balance
  • Shapes and lines
  • Pattern
  • Volume
  • Lighting
  • Texture
  • Tone
  • Contrast
  • Framing
  • Foreground
  • Background
  • Perspective

Center of Interest
At first these have seemed quite confusing at first to me. With future research and experience I’m sure I’ll finally understand.

Each picture need to catch the viewer’s eyes.  The photograph should have only one center of interest and then the other elements in the photograph must support the focus of attention to the center of interest. If a photo doesn’t have a center of interest or multiple areas of focus it can become quite confusing to the viewer.


Often key in most pictures, the simpler and more direct a picture is, the clearer it is to understand and this increases it’s effectiveness of being a good photograph. Ensuring there is only enough material in the picture to convey one single idea makes the picture clear to its center of focus. The scene should never be cluttered as the confusing elements within the picture will just take away the viewers focus from the center of focus.

View Point and Camera Angle

For good composition it is very important to look at the view point and camera angle. Controlling composition is as easy as repositioning the subject within the frame. Using different view points or camera angles can add drama and excitment or emphasise something unusual within a shot. As most subjects are 3D they should be photographed from an angle to allow the viewer to see more than just one side. By walking around the subject this ensures the best viewport to use. Viewport and Camera angle are usually used together or interchangeably. Viewport is the position of the camera to its subject. Camera angle is the angle that the camera lens is tilted.

Eye level Shots

These are done when the camera is held horizontal, eye-level shots are usualIy made at a height of about 5 1/2 feet, as this is the height that the average adult sees. Moving the camera angle up or down changes whether its a high or low eye level shot.





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