Composition and Landscape Photography

How to Single-Handedly take a Better Landscape Photo

May 30, 2023

Composition is one of my favourite topics for discussion in landscape photography because strong composition can result in a powerful visual photo. However, overlooking composition or using it ineffectively can be disappointing, resulting in a lack of overall image visual appeal.  

There are many different compositional approaches in photography, and it's the role of the photographer to apply or intentionally disregard composition rules in creating a photo. However, using composition effectively can sometimes feel confusing when immersed in nature. Often there are distractions, multiple visual elements, conflicting perspectives, and visually uninteresting elements that need to be avoided. Then on top of all of this, there's a personal style and preference for the composition of an image.    

It's no surprise that learning to compose a landscape scene and using compositional elements effectively will take time and practice. However, there is one approach a photographer can take to create a stronger image single-handedly. 

If you want to take better landscape photos, aim, in most situations, to compose your images simply around a single identifiable subject. A landscape photo is usually stronger when there's a clear and identifiable main subject. The simple approach of drawing your intended audience's attention to the main subject while eliminating or reducing the visual impact of additional competing elements within a frame will usually result in a strong visual image. 

ISO 64, 14mm, f9, 1/25 sec

Don't be afraid to experiment with different approaches to composition in your landscape photography. Doing so allows you to learn and grow as a photographer. However, simplicity is sometimes the answer when unsure about the best compositional approach in a scene. Often, composing a scene in a way that showcases a single main subject will single-handedly be the most effective way to create a strong visual frame.  


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