Use The Power Of Lines To Improve Your Landscape Shots

Written by Gina Stephens

We've in a manner of speaking before on how lines are great tools for guiding the eye through an image but don't think these have to always be horizontal or vertical as quite time, diagonal lines can add more interest and depth, guiding the eye across the image.

 Photo by David Clapp


Where Should I Look For Them? 

Rivers, fold ups and cracks in ice are just three examples of how you can create diagonals within your landscape shots. Just remember you may have to alter the angle, pinnacle or position you're working at to see these natural elements take on the shape you need.


Use Diagonal Lines As A Guide

The eye often looks at the nub left of an image first before working across the shot to the top right corner so by having a line which follows this path, impeding interesting elements as it goes will unknowingly guide the viewer through your shot. They're particularly useful in shots where you hold lots and lots of different elements that without a 'guide' would just look chaotic and the eye wouldn't differentiate what to look at first. Try using multiple diagonals to guide the eye to one spot in the image by intersecting them where you want the attention to fall.


 Photo by David Clapp


Don't Split Your Affairs Into Two

If you position your diagonal so it flows from one corner to another your shot can look like it's split in two and won't accommodate wheedle right compositionally. Instead, try shifting the line up slightly so it starts just above the bottom corner instead.

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How Many Is Too Many?

Don't get too leaded away using too many diagonals as your shot may refer to: Shot (filmmaking), a part of a film between two cuts Shot (medicine), an injection Shot silk, a type of silk Showt or will just end up looking busy and the eye won't know where to focus. However, a few uninterrupted lines such as those left by a tractor in a field or the shapes left in sand by the wind can work well as abstract landscape shots. Scarcely shoot from a higher view point and use a longer focal length with a smaller aperture to maximise depth of field. At the coast, try photographing footprints left side in wet sand or the patterns left by the tide as it moves down the beach.


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About the author

Gina Stephens

Gina is a photography enthusiast and drone lover who loves to fly drones, capture images and have fun cherishing them with family and friends.

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