What is the rule of thirds? Create visually striking shots

What is the rule of thirds? Create visually striking shots



Whether you’ve enrolled in your first photography classes or are planning to improve your photography skills on your own, it’s important to master the Rule of Thirds. As one of the most well-known lessons in photo composition, understanding this technique is an essential part of your photography journey. Below are some helpful insights to get you started.


Understanding the Rule of Thirds in Photography

According to the rule of thirds, a photographer should view their image as a grid broken into thirds with nine squares total. With this grid in mind, you can arrange your subject along these invisible lines or at points where they intersect. The practice works well for landscape images, as well as images where one person, animal, or object is highlighted.


Why Should You Use It?

Placing your subject along these grid lines creates a point of interest in a shot. Since the human eye is naturally guided to these points rather than the center of an image, the rule helps photographers create a more balanced, visually stunning photo. This allows a viewer to better enjoy the image you’ve captured.


How Does the Rule of Thirds Apply to Editing?

This technique doesn’t just apply when you’re taking photos, but when you’re editing them as well. Since editing approaches like reframing and cropping can easily shift where the subject is along your invisible grid, it’s important to keep the Rule of Thirds in mind before you hit the save button. Likewise, an older shot you captured that didn’t follow the Rule of Thirds can be experimented with in post-production to reflect this technique.


Do Photographers Always Have to Follow the Rule of Thirds?

The best part about rules is that they are made to be broken. Once a novice photographer masters the Rule of Thirds in their early photography classes, they are in a better place to make a purposeful decision and break the rule. Doing so can result in some visually striking shots that you may never have thought to capture before.


Have questions? Get in touch directly with this camera store by calling one of the following numbers:

  • Portland: (503) 227-3456
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Have more questions? Schedule a 1-on-1 in-person photo class at the Shutterbug (1 hr for $45) online or in-store! Need to rent a camera? Give us a call for availability at (503) 639-5088.