April 2010 Workshop - Composition


April 27, 2010 - This month's workshop was the first of many events that our new coordinator, Douglas Wade, presented to a group of approximately 37 people.

The topic offered benefits for the novice, as well as, to the master photographer.

The first discussion focused on the "Science and Art Form" of composition. A definition of composition was given: “Knowledge” in the placement or arrangement of visual elements that adds impact or acceptance, as in the case of our photographs. The presentation began with PowerPoint slides on the Science of Composition: The Rule of Thirds and the Golden Rectangle.

Contrasting the Science was the Art Form or more subjective usage of items with examples on: Pattern, Symmetry, Texture, Depth of Field, Lines, Framing, Perspective, Space, Balance, and Color. Several members were snapping shots of the power point presentation with their camera phones.

Most of the time, it's a balance between a Science and Art Form where photographs sometimes end up in the middle. Understanding the rules is beneficial, however, knowing how to break them is paramount. The overall goal is to make more striking images by learning and applying these principles.

The last part of the lecture was a group assignment to critique three images: "What would you do", crop it, darken it, or even Photoshop out some distraction. Following the group critique, small groups discussed different photographs utilizing a simple cropping tool. Everyone seemed to enjoy the hands on cropping project. The table discussions encouraged people to think about what would enhance each of the photos.



Article by Douglas Wade

Photos by Lee Garner

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