Tip of the Day – Centered Composition

Tip of the Day – Centered Composition

For the next three weeks on Tip of the Day, we’re delving deep into the Elements of composition.

We’ll start off with the simplest element, which is often overlooked and even shunned because it is so basic. Centering is what most people who are starting out as photographers default to – after all – the focus point on your camera by default is usually smack bang in the centre, right?

Once you learn to move that focus point around and expand your compositional repertoire, centered composition may seem overly simplistic, however it does have its place. Centering can be used to create a sense of calmness, stillness and serenity. It can also work hand in hand with another compositional element – symmetry (which we’ll talk about later).

Square format – where Instagram reigns king – is the ideal aspect ratio for centering and you’ll see many successful images on this popular social media platform that utilise it well.

This image of Jett works by using centering mainly due to his focused gaze directly into the camera and his body oriented straight forwards. The simplistic environment, with no competing elements, and straight horizon also compliment the decision to use centering in this shot.

Canon EOS 1D X, Canon EF 24-70mm ƒ/2.8L II @ 24mm, ISO 1600, 1/1250 sec, ƒ/2.8⠀

This daily tip is tip 1 of a 13 part series called 13 Elements of Composition. To receive a new tip each day from this series direct to your email inbox, sign up below.

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