Photographers are an odd bunch. We often find our conversations drifting from one absolute to nothing be absolute. One area that I have always found interesting, and seems to fit this back and forth, is how approach and talk about composition. When you learn about photography and photographs, we talk about the rules of composition, elements of composition, and how they should be followed. Then as soon as tell people to follow them, we ask them to break the rules to be exciting or showcase examples of a photographer who has been able to make interesting photographs by not following the rules.
In this week’s podcast, I take a look at how our misguided approach to thinking about and discussing composition can be a problem. We will look at how photographs with composition and not subject are no better than images with good subjects and no composition. Ultimately, we need to understand how various elements of composition come together in a photograph to help us understand and appreciate the photograph, intention of the photographer, and possible meanings of the photograph. While composition might be all about connecting and making space and dimension in a photograph, as photographers, our ability to understand composition is central to getting work created that speaks to who we are as photographers.
Gear used in podcast
One of the questions I get asked frequently is what sort of equipment do I use to record my podcast. I have used a variety of equipment in the three years that I have been recording, but here is the current list of equipment that I am using. Also as an FYI and full disclosure, the links are affiliate links to Amazon.
Rode Procaster XLR microphone
Rode Boom Arm
Rode PSM Shockmount
All three Rode components a kit
Focusrite Scarlet 2i2
Adobe Audition (part of creative cloud subscription)
OWC Thunderbolt 3 dock