All about Hoofbeats & Footprints

Watch Your Back

Something so simple can make such a difference in your photograph. Hopefully I’m not preaching to the choir, but when framing your shot really check out your background.

You want to make sure it is pleasing and not distracting to your primary subject. Busy compositions cause the viewers eye to be distracted and sometimes unsettled within your photograph. For example, view this butterfly with its background:

Now granted, butterflies are difficult to capture. In particular with a desirable background. The background above competes with the butterfly, not only being right behind it, but also to the left side of the frame. Compare this photograph to this one below:

Now granted, my preference would have been to have the butterfly looking into the frame, instead of towards the outside on the left. But the background is far more complementary to the butterfly. One sees the butterfly in all of its glory and elegance. Also, I cropped a bit close to the top of his wing. Some color adjustments to the black in the background can also lighten up the image.

Make sure you have plenty of room for your subject in the frame. This way when you get back home, you can crop as needed. Zoom in too tight and you have nothing to work with. I am finding that now I’m thinking more through my shot, I’m taking less photographs, but better ones.

Take time to frame your shot. Make sure you check all corners and edges for any distracting objects. Move side to side, front and back to get a supportive background.

Happy Shooting ! Bella

9 replies »

  1. Be aware of your background.
    Excellent advice and so often seen as a problem especially for beginning photographers.
    Trees and phone poles growing out of people’s heads is seen way too frequently.

      • omigosh. that would be HEAVEN, are you kidding me?

        i chase flutterbys into gigantic spiderwebs to catch a glimpse of them… i stumble into alligators in the swamps to photograph them. you ask if i would want to see MILLIONS of monarchs at their migration’s end? hahahaha! silly.

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