Leading Lines: Photography Friday, Week 5

What makes a photo catch our eye?

We've already talked about one "rule" of composition, which is The Rule of Thirds.  The Rule of Thirds doesn't apply to every photo we take.  Remember, composition "rules" are really just guidelines.  Once you understand them, it can be fun to break them.  On the other hand, there's a reason why the guidelines exist – they often help us take photos which are more pleasing to the eye.

We all like to take photos with a "wow factor" at least some of the time, right?

Another way to do this is to use leading lines when composing our photos.  A leading line is a line which leads the eye in a manner the photographer wishes.  Sometimes leading lines are used in conjunction with The Rule of Thirds, but not always.

Leading lines can be straight, diagonal, or curved (like a C or an S).  

Here's an example of a photo with leading lines:

Tracks
The photograph just pulls you in, doesn't it?  The eye has no choice but to follow the leading lines.

Here's an example of a photo with a C-curve used as a leading line:

Dway

Here's an example of a diagonal leading line:

IStock_000004256859Small

Sometimes you can create a diagonal just by tilting your camera.  As simple as it seems, it can make for a much more interesting photo.

Diag
There seems to be a trend lately of people really over-doing this.  Photographing with your camera at an angle isn't the wonder-all some people seem to think it is.  Tilting your camera to give you a diagonal leading line doesn't turn a bad photo into a good one.  Keep that in mind and try not to overuse this technique. 

Here's an example of a photo with an S-curve as a leading line:

IStock_000000836644Small

You might have noticed using a diagonal, a C-curve, or an S-curve is more effective when the leading line begins in the corner of your frame.

I hope you will try incorporating leading lines into your photos if you aren't already doing so.  I'd love for you to share some examples of your photos with me over the next week.  You can do so by uploading your photos to the Twenty Four's Shutterbugs Flickr group.

Good luck practicing with your cameras this weekend!

© Twenty Four At Heart

36 Responses to “Leading Lines: Photography Friday, Week 5”

  1. Jan

    It’s going to rain all weekend here. 🙁
    On the up side, I’ll have plenty of time to cook and take pictures of that.

  2. Jan

    It’s going to rain all weekend here. 🙁
    On the up side, I’ll have plenty of time to cook and take pictures of that.

  3. Jan

    It’s going to rain all weekend here. 🙁
    On the up side, I’ll have plenty of time to cook and take pictures of that.

  4. di

    Great hint! Just added an example shot to the Flickr Group. Have a great week-end, Suzanne!

  5. di

    Great hint! Just added an example shot to the Flickr Group. Have a great week-end, Suzanne!

  6. di

    Great hint! Just added an example shot to the Flickr Group. Have a great week-end, Suzanne!

  7. Life with Kaishon

    Oh! Such great advice! Do you know that I heart faces is going to have a photo walk in SoCal on June 5? My friend Susan Keller is one of the teachers and she is AMAZING! You should totally go : ) You know, if you don’t have one million other things to do on a Saturday morning.

  8. Life with Kaishon

    Oh! Such great advice! Do you know that I heart faces is going to have a photo walk in SoCal on June 5? My friend Susan Keller is one of the teachers and she is AMAZING! You should totally go : ) You know, if you don’t have one million other things to do on a Saturday morning.

  9. Life with Kaishon

    Oh! Such great advice! Do you know that I heart faces is going to have a photo walk in SoCal on June 5? My friend Susan Keller is one of the teachers and she is AMAZING! You should totally go : ) You know, if you don’t have one million other things to do on a Saturday morning.

  10. Kelly

    I love these Photography Fridays – thank you. Will practice this weekend.

  11. Kelly

    I love these Photography Fridays – thank you. Will practice this weekend.

  12. Kelly

    I love these Photography Fridays – thank you. Will practice this weekend.

  13. marsha

    WOW! So glad I’ve found your blog! I’m so eager to learn about photography. Love your shots and great tips!

  14. marsha

    WOW! So glad I’ve found your blog! I’m so eager to learn about photography. Love your shots and great tips!

  15. marsha

    WOW! So glad I’ve found your blog! I’m so eager to learn about photography. Love your shots and great tips!

  16. Nicole

    Thanks for the photography tips 24! I live in San Diego, and just love taking pics outside whenever I can. California is the best. Love your blog 24…Take care….Peace! 🙂

  17. Nicole

    Thanks for the photography tips 24! I live in San Diego, and just love taking pics outside whenever I can. California is the best. Love your blog 24…Take care….Peace! 🙂

  18. Nicole

    Thanks for the photography tips 24! I live in San Diego, and just love taking pics outside whenever I can. California is the best. Love your blog 24…Take care….Peace! 🙂

  19. Joanne

    I added two pics to your shutterbugs group. The same shot two angles, and to zooms, the difference, to me, is amazing. The one I thought was plain turned out to be perfect, (well, I think so, anyway!)and the one I worked on to frame, is nothing special, funny how stuff works like that!

  20. Joanne

    I added two pics to your shutterbugs group. The same shot two angles, and to zooms, the difference, to me, is amazing. The one I thought was plain turned out to be perfect, (well, I think so, anyway!)and the one I worked on to frame, is nothing special, funny how stuff works like that!

  21. Joanne

    I added two pics to your shutterbugs group. The same shot two angles, and to zooms, the difference, to me, is amazing. The one I thought was plain turned out to be perfect, (well, I think so, anyway!)and the one I worked on to frame, is nothing special, funny how stuff works like that!

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