Rule of Thirds and Photography

Although most beginning artists resist following "rules" - fearing they will hurt their creativity, there are indeed many rules and guidelines that help. One rule in particular is really essential: the Rule of Thirds.

From Paint to Photo: The Rule of Thirds and Photography

The Rule of Thirds actually goes way back. Painters have been benefitting from this rule since the days when Greek artists discovered it. So let's take a look at the Rule of Thirds as it relates to photography. Actually, as my friend likes to say, this should be called the "Rule of Ninths" instead of the "Rule of Thirds". This is because the Rule of Thirds is put to use by dividing the rectangular shape of your scene into nine smaller rectangles like so:

Rule of Thirds and Photography: Rectangle Divided into Thirds

You add a great deal of dramatic interest by placing your subject at any of the four points where the lines cross, like so:
Mt. Rainier and Barn
Rose Window at York Minster
Rule of Thirds Overlay
© Jim Miotke
All Rights Reserved
Little Lamb Obeying the Rule of Thirds
Little lamb
Obeying the Rule of Thirds
© Jim Miotke
All Rights Reserved
Rule of Thirds and Photography of a Barn Near Mt. Rainier
Barn Near Mt. Rainier
© Jim Miotke
All Rights Reserved

Note how each of the above photos holds additional visual interest because the subject is placed off-center, according to the Rule of Thirds.