tutorial - Leading Lines

May 29, 2013  •  Leave a Comment

We tell stories. We create feelings. 

As Photographers, what we include and what we exclude are the tools of our trade. We include we want. We choose our compositions to lead our viewers around the photograph. One of the composition tricks we use to lead viewers around our photographs is Leading Lines.

Another  composition trick, the Rule Of Thirds, is used often in composition of landscape photographs. We try to put the horizon on either the top third or lower third line. Using Leading Lines, we can draw the viewer around the photo, to the left, right or top or bottom. Leading Lines allow you, the photographer, to focus the viewers eyes on what you want to tell. 

 

LED Curtain

Sometimes, as in the above photograph, the Leading Lines themselves are the focus.

 

5 Rock Waterfall More often, as in the rock waterfall photograph, the Leading Lines like the logs moving left to right, down to up, move the viewer around the image and frame the waterfall. Using a greater depth of field, in this case f32, allows all of the image to be in focus. Slowing the shutter speed down to 1/13 second allows the water to blur, and create the effect of water in motion.

 

Take a look at most images from great photographers and you'll see some form of leading lines like these:

  • Vertical lines, like buildings, telephone poles, streets, door and window frames. 

  • Horizontal lines, like roads, streets, fences, the horizon.

  • Diagonal lines, like rivers, streets, logs. 

  • S-Curves of roads, creeks, paths

  • Converging lines such as sides of a street, highway, walls, buildings

In most every single photograph you take it’s possible to compose with at least one of these lines in your photograph.  Mastering composition  concepts like rule of thirds, and  using leading lines will add more depth to your photography, helping you tell your story in images you make!

 

 

Also in Composition: Rule of Thirds http://www.bluefinstudios.com/blog/2013/1/tutorial---rule-of-thirds 


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