10 Photography Composition Tips From Steve McCurry (Video)

As a photographer starting out, the first place I’d send people wanting learn the principles of photography composition are these following 10 tips by Steve McCurry. From an early age he’s one of the photographers whose images caught my eye and got me hooked on photography and telling stories from behind the lens.  For those of you who don’t know, Steve McCurry is an award-winning editorial photographer best known for his photograph, “Afghan Girl” (Sharbat Gula), which originally appeared on the June 1985 cover of National Geographic magazine when she was approximately 12 years old.

Here are the 10 rules (all photographs by Steve McCurry):

#1 Rule of Thirds

Place points of interest on intersections

#2 Leading Lines

Use natural lines to lead the eye into the picture

#3 Diagonals

Diagonal lines create great movement

#4 Framing

Use natural frames like windows and doors

 #5 Figure to Ground

Find a contrast between subject and background

 #6 Fill the Frame

Get close to your subjects

 #7 Centre Dominant Eye

Place the dominant eye in the centre of the photo. This gives the impression the eyes follow you.

 #8 Patterns and Repetition

Patterns are aesthetically pleasing. But the best is when the pattern is interrupted

 #9 Symmetry

Symmetry is pleasing to the eye


#10 Rules were meant to be broken

Enjoy yourself and photograph in your own way and style

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