Composition: the basics

By Adrian Toon, director of a2n.

So how do you take that perfect picture, when you capture the moment with a people picture, or get that product looking its best?

Composition is key, but only when the scene is set and your camera set up to take the shot.

Check everything that is going to be ‘in shot’ – the background, the product, people – and set the scene if you can in your mind of what you wish to capture. Take multiple images. This helps to work around the ‘blink’ when taking people – someone in a scene always does. Move and take slightly different angles, but again know in your mind what you want to capture.

You should be familiar with your camera. Don’t attempt to get that perfect image unless you know what settings you are going to use. When taking people pictures, the moment is easily lost as you fiddle to change settings on your camera. Practice first, if necessary, so that the camera will capture what you need when you point and shoot.

If you need inspiration for the picture you want to take, look at other photographs that inspire you and try to work out how it was taken. Simply work to create something similar.

With a little bit of practice, it is quite easy to improve your photography and produce that image an editor would like to use.