One of the first things I learned when I started taking pictures was how to break all the rules. Actually, it wasn’t so much that I broke all the rules but rather that I didn’t have a clue what the rules are. I just knew what I did and didn’t like so I learned (and continue to learn) through a lot of trial and error.
It’s the same way that I learn most things. As with most things in life, I tend to go back later to read the directions but that may not be the best learning style for everyone.
When we start feeling a bit stale with our photography, it may be a good time to go back to the basics.
It could be as simple as taking the time to truly study things like ISO, shutter speed and aperture, or going back to reading the owner’s manual for our camera for the 100th time. For some though, folks like me, it could also be time to finally learn the basic rules of composition.
This might not be as easy of a task as you might think because even the professional photographers don’t seem to always agree with what those rules actually are.
One thing they all seem to agree on though is that they are more like guidelines than hard rules.
A Few Common Rules of Composition
I find it amazing how much more sense stuff makes to me when I come back to it later and how much of it comes naturally in what we like. If you learn anything from this, learn that the best part of the rules is breaking them, but it sure can help to at least know them so that you have a foundation to build from.