What Are The 7 Elements Of Photography?Updated on April 6, 2023 in Photography by Alifiya Mustafa
Photography is most often considered an art because it takes various techniques, skills, and artistic expressions to make a photo a fine piece of artwork. Modern photographers use advanced technology and equipment to capture a photo in the most artistic way possible.
But, you must be wondering – How do you make a photograph good? To make any photograph good, you need to create the proper balance between the 7 elements of photography.
What are these 7 elements of photography? Let’s start learning.
What Are The 7 Elements Of Photography?
There are 7 basic elements of photography that are vital for the success of your composition and to make the viewers feel fascinated with your images. These 7 elements of photography are:
Master these 7 elements of photography, and you’ll know the key to capturing every setting aesthetically.
Lines are everywhere. These can be horizontal, vertical, curved, or jagged. Anywhere you look around, you can form lines around what you see. Examples are roads, sunsets, bridges, etc.
The line is one of the most important elements of photography because it gives a path for the viewers to follow. Lines are also used to create boundaries to separate multiple objects in a photograph such as a sky and the ground or the ocean and the beach.
Lines are important to give a structure to your image. It defines all the elements that you see in an image like what’s the background, what’s in the front, the above, and the sides. This makes your photograph feel intentional and purposeful.
There might be some fading lines like clouds in the sky. They may apparel almost merged, but there’s still a thin line.
Or, there might not be a line at all but you’ll still see it, like a girl staring at a tree. The space between the girl and the tree might be empty, but the viewers know where the “line” is directing them to see.
Thus, lines create the connections that give the impact to an image.
Every object in your photograph can be assigned a 2D shape. The basic shapes that your objects might appear as are circles, rectangles, squares, and triangles.
The shapes can be more defined by using silhouette lighting like the silhouette of a baby. We’ve all started comprising an image in form of sketches and paintings by using shapes like the landscape in our 1st grade with a rectangular tree, a square hut, and a few triangular mountains with a round sun shining above.
Shapes give a story to your images, create contrast, and catch attention. Every shape triggers different emotions. A round is more peaceful, triangles are dynamic, quadrilaterals can be practical, and so on.
The form is among the elements of photography that gives shape to the objects. It is where you give a three-dimensional representation of your objects. The form allows you to take your lined and 2D objects and turn them into more 3D and real life-like.
To build the form, the most important thing is your photography lighting setup. With correct lighting and positioning, you can create an illusion of depth in your photos.
Color is one of the most basic elements of photography. Colors play a huge role in setting the mood of a photograph. The common color palettes used are bright, cool, and dull. Different types of colors trigger different moods such as:
- Yellow, Orange, Red = Happy, energetic, funny, love
- Blue, Green, Purple = Relaxing, calm, peaceful
- Grey, black, brown = Intense, sad, gloomy
However, it completely depends on what view you’ve captured the image. The cool and dull colors can always be used to create nostalgia and the bright colors can also be used to represent boldness or rage.
When you’re doing black and white photography, you’ve got to be very careful and creative about what emotions you want to put in your image.
To be more careful with colors, you may want to understand the color theory in photography and take the assistance of a color wheel for the most delightful composition.
Texture is among the elements of photography that gives you the freedom to be as creative as possible. It asks you to focus on the details and put life into your photos.
You can find texture naturally in your subjects like in the leaves, trees, furs, feathers, basketballs, skin, stones, and more. Or, you can create texture intentionally by using additional props such as using rusted pans or silk clothes behind your product photography.
The textures are all about making your photos more interesting and detailed. Again, the lighting and your angles play an important role in capturing textures clearly.
The most interesting and powerful impact of texture is created in macro photography.
When we talk about space, we’re talking about the negative space, filled space, the space between two objects in the image, and the overall distance.
Space is one of the elements of photography that give depth to your image. It allows the viewers to identify whether the object is far or near in the image and calculate the distance.
The space also ensures that your image has symmetry and that different objects are easily distinguishable.
If you fail to use the space wisely, your objects might appear cluttered to scattered. The balance in space is necessary to make your image feel well-composed.
Depth in an image is offered by visual cues. Depth is another one of the elements of photography that depends on lighting along with shadows, the distance of your camera to the object, your position, and your angle.
The depth goes hand in hand with the space. Farther the final object appears, the more the depth is realized in an image.
The effect of depth can also be seen in textures like the cracks on the roads and walls.
Focusing on the horizon of the image enables you to capture depth as the image starts to converge as it reaches its horizon.
With elements of photography, your image is composed of a background, a middle ground, and a foreground. The stronger the distinction between these grounds, the deeper the depth of field in your photos.
Being a photographer, you wish to learn the art of photography and develop the skill set required to capture an eye-catching image.
This article breaks down the 7 elements of photography that a true artist and professional like you should focus on. These elements of photography are all you need to capture a professional, well-composed, and impactful image.
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