Composition plays an important role in a photograph. Composition can be though like the presentation or arrangement of the various elements in a scene. It is the composition which often makes a good photograph into a great photograph. Often photographers neglect this aspect & even though their pictures are perfect in other aspect(light, subject etc) but they still fail to leave a mark, as they lack a strong composition.
A photograph in its sense is two dimensional. In order to create more interest & depth, we need to make them a three dimensional one. Here, one needs to have three elements – the foreground, the middle-ground & the background, to give the viewer a three dimensional feel. This also helps in strengthening the composition as the eyes wander across each of the three areas across the image & the brain perceives them as a three dimensional.
I had been at the beach today & the festival of ‘chhath puja’ was on. This gave me a perfect opportunity to drive this point(of composition) home. Look at the image below. How is it? The higher angle showcases the sea of people effectively. The photograph is sharp across but it still fails to grab a second look. The reason? It is flat. The composition is average. This is the photograph which even a non-photographer will compose without any hitch.
Now, examine the below image. I purposely included the people standing. These standing people form my foreground, the middle-ground is the sea of the people & the background is formed by the monument & the horizon line. This image feels more complete & immersive. Here the viewer feels as if he is witnessing the scene live. However, notice how small in size I have the foreground. It is so as to not drive undue attention(distraction) from my main subject, the middle-ground – the sea of people. So carefully compose as to not include unnecessary distractions within the frame which divulge the viewer’s attention.
I hope the point is clear as water. Try to incorporate this compositional technique in your photographs & see them improve radically.