Every time we pick up a camera in to make a photo we are focusing our attention, and the attention of those who will view the image, on our selected subject. The subject is arranged within the boundaries of the photographic frame. Depending upon the subject and type of photography, we may have a split second or considerably longer to frame the subject and capture the image.

As image makers we need to develop the skills to quickly analyze situations against a vision we are trying to realize. Based on this analysis, we make aesthetic and technical decisions intended to yield the image we visualized. By learning about line, color, contrast, perspective and light, for example, we build an understanding of how these elements can impact a composition.

With photography the good news is that everything happens within the boundaries of a pre-defined photographic frame, but there’s lots going on within that frame. Building a set of personal aesthetic skills and practicing their application in a variety of situations is one of the key components to better image making.

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