Lines, Thirds and Depth

Photography is one of the common forms of art these days. It’s easy when you carry a high-quality camera in your pocket everywhere you go. There are many elements that can make a photograph great. In this post, I’ll be analyzing three different elements in three different photos. They include leading lines, rule of thirds and depth of field.

All three of the photos featured in today’s post were taken and posted by a Utah-based photographer named Ammon Cluff. He is a self-taught landscape and adventure photographer and videographer.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ammoncluffphoto/

Squarespace: https://ammon-cluff.squarespace.com/


Leading Lines 

 

Leading lines are lines in a photo that guides the viewer’s eyes through the photograph and draws focus to the subject. Leading lines can be straight, diagonal, curvy, zig zagged and so on. In this photograph, the leading lines are diagonal. The photographer placed an object close in the foreground and used a viewpoint from almost ground level to achieve leading lines that guide the eye from one side of the frame to the other. This allows everything in the photo to be seen.

Mimicking the style of the first photograph, leading lines can be found everywhere. The trick is being able to recognize them and then capture them in a way that represents them. Leading lines can really make the difference in any photograph. As seen above, the lines in the photo lead to the same area or point.


Rule of Thirds

The rule of thirds is a solid way to achieve focus on the subject in a photograph. Utilizing the rule of thirds can help lead the viewer’s eye through the photograph, just as was discussed with leading lines. Balance in a photo can be accomplished by positioning the main or most important subject of the photo along the lines and where they intersect. The man in this photo is aligned with the right side of the grid. Notice even further that the line where the lake meets the mountain is also along the bottom horizontal line of the grid.

The rule of thirds is also utilized in this photograph. There is a main subject in the photo and because she is placed on one of the lines, she balances the photo and is the main subject. To make this photo better follow the rule of thirds, I could crop it so the top of the couch falls on the top horizontal line. I focused the subject on the right side of the photo to mimic the first example of using thirds.


Depth of Field

depth2

 

Because photographs are two-dimensional, it’s important to emphasize the depth which was seen by the photographer when they took the photo. One way to do this is by placing an object in the foreground. This helps the mind to know how far the photographer is from every object in the photo. In this photo, the cello and the cellist are the objects in the foreground. Because of the focus on these things, you know that the rock in the background is relatively far away.

DSC_0546

This photo that I took uses depth in that it is focused on one object and the rest are somewhere in the background. This brings focus to the object and the mind is able to understand that the objects in the photos are at different distances. It is the depth of the photo.


There are many elements and guidelines in photography that can help make a photo great. Leading lines, the rule of thirds and depth of field are just three. They are significant ones and they are most commonly used and recognized in photos. Remember these elements when analyzing or even taking photos.

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Typography Dos

 

original

This image is an excerpt from the Young Living Essential Oil 2017 Product Guide. (https://issuu.com/youngliving/docs) The company is known for their essential oils and oil blends, oil-enhanced nutritional supplements, bath and body products, and skincare solutions. The designer of the magazine layout could not be identified.

I will be observing the different typefaces and will explain what they are, what what category they fit in, how they are identified and what makes the types and elements contrasting.

font 1.2

Type One

 

The first observed font fits into the category of sans serif. “Sans” in French means “without.” As shown below, this type doesn’t have serifs, which is the primary identifier of sans serif types. Other attributes of sans serif fonts are no thin-to-thick transition in the strokes and no stress in the letters. The stress on this type is vertical. font slant and serif

font 2.2

Type Two

The next font is categorized as a script type. Script types are typefaces that look as though they are hand lettered. font type 2.2

Contrast

The main contrast between the two types is the weight. The words, “our mission” has a very thick, solid stroke. This sets this apart and contrasts with the small paragraph due to its thin stroke.

Overall, this excerpt is a good example of how two typefaces can be used together on one page to create contrast. The first typeface is a sans serif type and the second is a script type. They work together due to their type. This is good use of typography.

What Makes and Ad So Great?

Let’s look at the elements of design…

poster

This is a poster advertising a pop up shop for Wellen’s Surf Shop. Wellen is an online-based surf company focused on men’s clothing. They sell their clothes in stores through third-parties. The designer of the advertisement could not be identified.

I will be breaking down the advertisement into five elements of design. This includes contrast, repetition, alignment, proximity and color.

Contrast 

contrast

First off, there is contrast in the color of the poster and the color of the font. The designer, however seems to be employing contrast in the fonts. There is a bold and a regular typeface for most used font. I have the bold font underlined in green and the regular typeface for the same font underlined in blue. The word “gentleman” adds more contrast to the ad. It is in a different font, it’s a bigger size and its placed at an angle. It allows the word to stand out against the other fonts.

Repetition

Repetition

The repetitive element in this ad is, again, the font. The designer uses the same font with both a regular and bold typeface.

Alignment 

alignment

In this ad, we can tell that the text and image is a center alignment. While center alignment is the most common and can sometimes make a design boring, it works well with the other elements of design to make it interesting to the audience. It is clearly intentional.

Proximity

Proximity

Proximity helps the viewer understand what, where and when something is happening. Highlighted in green, we understand that due to the proximity of the words there is a pop up shop for Wellen Surf Shop and it’s for gentlemen. Next, the viewer needs to know where and when the event is going to happen. This is inside the red box. While the viewer has the what, where and when, there can still be more information added to the image to let them know just a little more about what is going on. Since it’s not as vital, this information is added below everything else in smaller, regular typeface. But it’s close the rest of the information. This is displayed in the yellow box.

Color

In terms of color, this design is fairly simple. There are only a few colors on the page. It’s just different shades and tints of blue and brown.

colors2

Overall, this advertisement is good example of excellent yet simple design. The designer employs contrast through the font choices and color. Repetition is also shown through the font typeface. The words on the page are aligned centrally with the man who is in the photograph, allowing the ad to flow. The proximity of the words help the viewer know what exactly is being advertised. Lastly, the colors in the ad are simple and work well with each other. All of these principles are things to consider when looking at or creating an advertisement.