Photos from Emil Parkaklis, Iphone photography school; Andy Bull,
-A mix of ambient light and flash.
• Most safe in a cloudy day.
• If you are photographing in sunlight, try to position yourself so that
the sun hits your subject from the side, this will give you nice
'modeling' and help create a 3D effect in the picture.
• Sunlight behind the subject can give a very pleasing 'backlight' effect
but be careful that you are not getting 'flare' in the lens, which
degrades the contrast of the image.
A picture taken in the middle of the day, the overhead
sun casts deep shadows into the kids' eyes, spoiling an
otherwise quite nice little group portrait.
This picture was taken at the same time as the one on the left
but here the sun is at the side and behind the subject.
rule of the third
• The rule of thirds is one of the most
important rules of photographic
composition. Landscape photographers
are particularly fond of this one, but it
works well for many types of subject.
• The rule of thirds simply says that,
instead of placing the main focus of
interest in the center of the frame, which
makes for a very static composition, that
you look to position it on an intersection
of the thirds. That is to say one third up
and one third in or two thirds up and one
third in etc.
Don’t put the horizon in the middle (almost
The tree takes on more importance in this picture because it
now sits on the intersection of the vertical and horizontal
third, which is a very powerful position in the frame.
Reasons for the rule of
1. The first is a more general feeling that a
subject in the center of the frame is 'at
rest', it's not going anywhere it feels . . .
And a bit boring.
2. Moving the subject, or main point of
interest, away from the center of the
frame shakes things up, makes the viewer
work a little, it just makes the picture
3. The emphasis can be either horizontal,
vertical or both.
4. Rule of the third for smartphone
Balancing the rule of the third
• The main subject of this scene is
clearly the bright orange cliff on
the right side of the river. But if
that was the only subject, the
weight of the image would be
focused on the right side.
• In order to balance out the scene,
the photographer the big rock on
the bottom left corner.
Setting your subject matter on a diagonal will almost always make for a more dynamic picture.
points. Move around the subject and look for a diagonal.
1. Head Room
-Too much headroom makes the person appear to be sinking. Most
novice photographers and videographers will frame shots of people with
too much headroom.
-Too little headroom places visual emphasis on the person's chin and
neck. When framing shots of people, pay attention to where the eyes
2. Lead room
-Leave extra space in the direction
your subject is looking. This is also
called a nose room. Leave extra
space in front of a moving person or
object, like a runner, bicycle, or
automobile when following the
3. Looking at the background
• Make sure there are no
Especially, in the corners of the
frame, behind the head, bright
• Or make he background of your
shot doesn't draw your viewer's
attention from your main subject.
Photos can tell a
story that words
Watch how Reuter told
a story about the
blizzard in 2013.
And how one photo
claimed the front page
of major news papers.
Flood in Venice Italia,
what image can you think of? (from abc.com)
Photos can tell you more
• This guy took a photo every time he saw
someone reading a book on the subway
• As part of a project called “last book”, to
make a point that reading printed books is
a beautiful human behavior that will not be
around for long.
Types of camera shots.
1. When shooting still images, look for different camera shots. To build
a complete story, or a sequence, you have to capture different
aspects of an object.
2. Commonly used shots are – wide shot (WS), medium shot (MS),
Close-up (CU), Reaction shot (RS), Point of view (POV).
3. There are other types of shots too. The full range of shot types are
introduced by mediacollege.com.
4. Note that this typology is a convention commonly used in photo,
video, film and television industries.
The five shot rule: the most common formula of stitching up
different camera shots to construct a story. (Source: Poynter
Institute, 5 types of photos that make for strong photo essays)
Shot 1. The scene setter
• Use Wide shot (WS) or
Extreme wide shot
• Where is your story
• What does it look like?
• What is the mood of the
place? (Think of audio
to go with it)
Shot 2: Connect
• Use Medium shot (MS)
• The spot of your action
• The character connects
with the setting.
• The area of the building or
town where your subjects
• This shot narrows your
story’s field of view and
should bring you closer in
Shot 3: the
• Close up (CU)
• Who is your main subject
and what does he or she
• This can be a traditional
head and shoulders shot
or a wider shot that shows
• It’s always best to take a
variety of portrait shots.
Shot 4. Capturing
• Extreme close up shot (ECU)
• Detail shots work especially well
for transitions, but can have great
storytelling potential all their own.
• What are the pictures on someone’s
desk? What books are they
reading? What’s that post card they
have tacked to the wall?
• All of these things tell us a little
bit about our subject.
• Medium close up, Over the
shoulder, or point of view shot.
• Action shots show your subject
doing something — this shot may
be your theme.
• This is the shot some
photographers spend an entire
shoot trying to perfect, often
amounting to the same shot being
taken 30 times.
• Photos of your subject in action are
essential in your story.
• Let’s watch the whole story. It is
an NPR project called Health care
Tips for photographers in action
(Kobre, Multimedia storytelling, pp. 121-122)
• Shoot continuously
• Build up an event and capture the closure (Arrive early and remain till the last guest
• Watch for transitions (entering the building…leaving the room)
• Frame horizontally (especially for cell phone cameras)
• Copy photos to capture history(from albums, refrigerators, or walls)
• Compose the image (include some extra spaces on the edges)