Composition: Balance



A majority of the photography world likes to fixate on the gear and equipment aspects of photography, but for some reason composition isn’t talked about as much.

People are led to think that a certain lens, or certain camera, or certain softbox will make them a better photographer.

This is frustrating, because if everybody understood basic composition rules, Instagram might not be filled with so many shitty photos.

I used to think about the technical/equipment side of photography a good deal, because I worked at a camera store.


So I figured I’d write a number of posts about composition, and relate it to my work, Skateboards and Landscapes.


In this post, I’ll be covering the rule of Balance.




In this photo of the bench overlooking Downtown Oakland, I placed the bench in the left side of the shot, and used the trail leading to the bench to balance it out.



In this shot, the bulldozer causes an imbalance because of it’s size and importance in relation to the trees in the background.





At the top of a hike near Ollantaytambo, Templo de Luna, a large cloud came over part of this hill that was across the valley, creating imbalance between the hill and the plateau. This dark shadow makes the hill look much more ominous and challenging to ascend.


On the path down from Machu Picchu heading up to Huaynapicchu, a potentially dangerous fall was on the right side. Having a higher perspective and placing the fellow hikers on the bottom left causes imbalance, making the viewer uneasy about the drop.




In this landscape photo, the rock on the left side is balanced by the clouds in the the top right.




Here Connor half-cabs over this chain into this rough bank. With the little girl standing next to the tree, this photo becomes more balanced, than if she wasn’t there.


My next post will be about another rule: Shutter Speed.