by: Nizaam Jami
images by: Anthony Morganti

You are scrolling through your Instagram, and a photo catches your attention, the picture looks great and appealing, but you can’t figure out why it is so attractive, what is that one thing which sets it apart from other photos. Well, my friend, that one thing which you can’t point out is ‘Composition.’

People focus on having the best camera to take good photos, but you don’t need the best camera out there to up your photography game, all you need to learn is composition. The composition is basically how all the pieces in a photograph fit together. It’s simple, yet it is often the area of photography that people struggle with.

So here are my simple guidelines to help you take exciting photos, once you learn them you will find that these guidelines are used by pros in basically every picture they take. Apply them and never retake dull images.

• Rule of Thirds


This is the most basic yet classic rule to follow. If you have ever heard about composition, you must have heard of the ‘Rule of Thirds.’ As a beginner photographer, you may tend to keep your subject in the center, but if you do that, you will notice that all your photos look boring. In Rule of Thirds, you divide your frame into three equal parts, both vertically and horizontally, by drawing straight lines. This option is available as a ‘grid ‘in your camera. When taking a photo, place your subject on the intersection of these lines, and it will result in more dynamic images.

• Center your Subject

Using the rule of thirds is excellent, but like any other art form, you can’t just stick to one rule for all your images. Sometimes placing your subject in the center can have more impact on the viewer. You can apply this rule when there are no distractions in the background of your subject, or to create a balance between right and left or top and bottom sides of your frame. This rule also works when you take portraits.

• Leading Lines

Using leading lines is the most powerful technique you can use. Human eyes are unconsciously drawn towards lines in an image. As the name suggests, leading lines mean that there will be lines in your frame that converge to a single point or your subject. It can be roads, walls, rail tracks, etc., use these leading lines intelligently to draw your viewer’s attention to your subject and not away from it. These lines can be straight, diagonal, curvy, zigzag, radial, etc., and can be used efficiently to spice up your images.

• Look for symmetry

You already know what symmetry means, create balance in your photos. Naturally, the human eye loves symmetry, be it in photography or any other form of art. The most common way to do this would be to divide the scene into halves of left and right or top and bottom. Look for patterns in your frame and place them in a balanced way in your image, and you are good to go.

• Bonus Tip

The guidelines I have given are just rules that one should follow. However, keep in mind that there are no limits to creativity; there are times when you should break out of traditional mold and experiment. Take photos from different angles, defy the rule of thirds, place your subject at a completely unusual place and practice. Have fun, and soon composition will come naturally to you!