Monday Photography Tip: Fill the Frame

Due to the Super Bowl and the Hunks vs. Punks Game, this past weekend, I am making this tip very brief; I want to spend a little more time on the pictures from the Hunks/Punks game.  (If you are new to this blog and have no clue what I’m talking about, scroll down to the previous post; it will explain it all.)

This tip continues in the same vein of composition. (Remember last week’s Rule of Thirds?)  This week, I want you to work on FILLING THE FRAME.  Simple as that.

Look at this picture of my little friend, Chris:

He played in the Pee-Wee Punks game that followed the Hunks vs. Punks game on Sunday.  As you can see, he’s concerned about some call the ref made…. 

The picture is fine.  But, it’s blah and boring.  That has nothing to do with sweet little Chris.  He’s great.  He’s cute.  He’s concerned and is trying to get everyone’s attention–he’s mid-sentence.  But, that’s beside the point.   Look at the picture as a whole.

As you can see, there’s a bunch of dead space surrounding him.  See the headless bodies behind him?   That meaningless clutter doesn’t help the picture tell the story.  In fact, it’s somewhat distracting.  (Also, notice how I composed the shot with Chris smackdab in the middle?  Ugh.)

Now, though,  look at how different and far more interesting the following picture of Chris is. 

God love it!  Snaggle-toothed little munchkin…He looks so tough!  So angry!  WAY better!  And, why?  Because I filled the frame. 

Now, this does not mean you have to cut everything out of your shot and take only closeups.  Sometimes you can’t get a shot without the extra surroundings.  Sometimes you need the extra surrounding objects to help explain where you are, or to expand the story you are telling with your pictures.  But, if you are going to take a wider-angled shot, you still should fill the frame.  

As you look through your viewfinder at the picture you’re composing, attempt to remove the unnecessary objects or people, if at all possible.  Look beyond your main subject and take note of the surroundings.  Then, use my tip:

Move in (or zoom in) for tighter shots; fill your frame.

I’ll do some more on this, with better examples, on a future Monday, but this will have to do for now.  I’ve got some Hunks/Punks pictures to work on!

Happy Shooting,

E.

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