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Composition can make an interesting subject bland or make an ordinary subject appear beautiful. In this course, photographer and author Ben Long explores the concepts of composition, from basics such as the rule of thirds to more advanced topics such as the way the eye travels through a photo.
The course addresses how the camera differs from the eye and introduces composition fundamentals, such as balance and point of view. Ben also examines the importance of geometry, light, and color in composition, and looks at how composition can be improved with a variety of post-production techniques. Interspersed throughout the course are workshop sessions that capture the creative energy of a group of photography students; shooting assignments and exercises; and analyses of the work of photographers Paul Taggart and Connie Imboden.
You've probably spent the bulk of your photographic life working in color, but of course I've had you shooting in black and white. So now, I think it's time for you to go back to color and start practicing some of this compositional vocabulary that we've been working with. As I said before, it's for the most part exactly like what you've been doing in black and white. There are just these extra considerations that you need to weigh when you're setting up your shot. Because of that, why don't you start simply, start with images that are still mostly about tone, interesting plays of light and that kind of thing, but that maybe have a color accent.
One little bit of color weight that you can start playing with and from there go more complex. A very nice place to start is working with portraits because you know exactly what color values you are going to have to work with and you can try to find situations that balance those out. As I said, color is a long course in itself. We are just trying to get the basics of color worked into the vocabulary that you've already had so that you can take what you've learned back into your color life for times when it's more appropriate than black and white.
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