Join Ben Long for an in-depth discussion in this video Balance, part of Photography Foundations: Composition.
Well now, this is real pretty, isn't it?…We've got the mountain. We've got the sky.…We've got the beautiful green meadow.…At the same time there is just something not quite right about this image.…It's just out of whack somehow.…It feels just a little off.…I mean like a simple suggestion here. If we just put me right here, ah!…The image is better now.…It's not better because it's me; it's better because now the image is balanced.…Elements in your frame have compositional weight.…I don't mean literal physical weight, although sometimes that does correspond,…but they have graphical weight.…
If you think of your images having kind of a fulcrum, then in this case the…mountain on one side tilts the balance off.…When you put another strong graphical element here, in this case me, the element,…or the image, comes back into balance. They are equally weighted.…Balance is a somewhat ephemeral slippery compositional idea, but it's the…one that you will be--one of the things you'll be worrying about in every…
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.
- Looking versus seeing
- Understanding when and why to use black and white
- Analyzing lines
- Arranging the elements into lines and shapes
- Working with perspective and symmetry
- Changing focal length, camera position, and depth
- Dividing rectangular frames into thirds
- Weighting the corners in square pictures
- Composing photographs of people
- Composing landscape photos
- Working with light: direction, texture, and negative space
- How to shoot color
- Guiding the viewer's eye
- Controlling depth
- Improving composition in post-production
Skill Level Intermediate
Photography Foundations: Exposure (2010)with Ben Long3h 24m Appropriate for all
Photography Foundations: Black and Whitewith Ben Long3h 3m Intermediate
1. Understanding Composition
What is composition?2m 1s
3. Composition Fundamentals
4. Geometry: Lines and Shapes
5. Shooting Best Practices
6. Balance Revisited
8. Workshop: Finding Light
10. Guiding the Viewer
11. Workshop: Foreground and Background
13. Post Production
14. Workshop Exhibition and Wrap-Up
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