Every craft has a list of “do’s and don’ts” but recognizing and avoiding them successfully in the field may, at times, prove difficult. Every shooting environment presents its unique challenges, so it may be hard to overcome them in the moment. However, seeing how others identify and conquer those same challenges can equip us to better deal with them on our own. Evan5ps is an Atlanta based photographer that has shared some tips to help you steer clear of a few compositional mistakes.

1 – Double Subject

This occurs when you place two main subjects within a single frame in a way that leaves the viewers confused as to where their focus should be. Even if your setting is beautiful and captivating, if it’s not the focus of your shot, you’ll need to deemphasize it enough to let the main subject stand out.

Two ways to do this:

1- Recompose your shot

2- Open your aperture to create separation between your subject and background

2 – Subject Looking Out of the frame

We tend to follow visual cues in real life and in the photos we encounter. One way this manifests is that we follow the eyes or gaze of the subject we see in a picture. If they are looking away and out of the frame, it draws your eyes away from the rest of the picture. However, directing your subject to gaze into the setting you capture is a useful way to draw the viewer’s eyes from the subject to something else of interest in the image.

However, directing your subject to gaze into the setting you capture is a useful way to draw the viewer’s eyes from the subject to something else of interest in the image.

3 – Tangent Lines

This means that something in the background is drawing lines through your subject; leaving anyone who views it confused about their relationship to the background.

It would be better to find a similar setting that captures the same feel but gives your subject the best chance to stand out.

4 – LAZY Composition

This one is rather simple to avoid, but for any number of reasons, fatigue or time constraints befalls us all. Whenever you walk into setting to take a picture, there is the easy picture and the picture that requires you think through the vision for the shot.

Ensuring that we always think and consider all the possible angles for the image before you shoot will help you avoid lazily composing them.

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