Saturday, March 4, 2017

Picture Practice - Composition - Framing

Wikipedia defines framing as "a technique used to bring focus to a subject."  In photography, it is the technique of drawing attention to the subject of your image by blocking other parts of the image with something in the scene. 

According to the Digital Photography School, the benefits of framing your shots are:

1. Giving the photo context (for example framing a scene with an archway can tell you something about the place you are by the architecture of the archway or including some foliage in the foreground of a shot can convey a sense of being out in nature).  In this photo, Rather than just shooting a squirrel on a bird feeder, the wreath lets the viewer know that the photo was taken from indoors during the Christmas season.

2. Giving images a sense of depth and layers (in essence framing a shot generally puts something in the foreground which adds an extra dimension to the shot).

3. Leading the eye towards your main focal point (some ‘frames’ can draw your photo’s viewer into the picture just by their shape). Some also believe that a frame can not only draw the eye into a picture but that it keeps it there longer – giving a barrier between your subject and the outside of the shot.

4. Intriguing your viewer. Sometimes it’s what you can’t see in an image that draws you into it as much as (if not more than) what you can see in the picture. Clever framing that leaves those viewing your image wondering a little or imagining what is behind your frame can be quite effective (get it wrong and it can also be quite annoying!).

 Below are two examples of framing--the first is straight out of the camera and the second is after cropping to remove the backpacks from the right side of the photo.  For our family, it is important to the story to see the two mamas behind the boys--sisters who are visiting in the lobby of the hospital where the youngest infant cousin is a patient.
After cropping:
 While architectural elements work well for framing your subject, it can be done in nature as well with things like trees or rock formations, so look for elements that you can use before you begin shooting.

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