Captive Photography

Photography is fascinating! Everyone knows when a photograph captivates them. It is not usually that simple a matter to pin-point what makes it great. This blog is devoted to figuring out just what makes a picture stand out.

Leading Lines

This picture is found in the public domain and can be located at:

This breathtaking view of a group of trees uses leading lines to draw the eyes to the sky above the tree line. Although the trees take up the bulk of the space of the photograph, the true subject becomes the sky above as the eyes are drawn along the trunks of the trees up towards the clouds.
The photo also manages to capture depth as the ever-thinning trunks of the tree affords a contrast between the foreground and the gradually distant tops of the trees.

This photograph has several leading lines pointing to and drawing the eye toward the scenery beyond the brick window. Everything around it becomes something of a frame and the eye is repeatedly directed to the focus of the photo.

Depth of Field

This photograph was taken by Katinka Zuchowicz of White River in Ocho Rios, Jamaica. It can be found at the following link:

The photograph is of a river in the midst of a community. It is an attempt to capture the many layers of a simple community.
There are many layers to this picture. In the foreground is the beautiful and stark branches of a tree in the river. Immediately behind it in the middle ground is a boat which can be seen in through the branches of the tree. The boat is also seen to be smaller than the looming tree branches. Still behind the boat in the background is what appears to be a shack of some sort. Above all this activity is the bridge with a passing vehicle. Even with all these different elements, the branches in the tranquil river in the foreground captures the attention and maintains the tranquil nature of the scene.

This image of a lizard in the sun shows the depth of the pile of wood the lizard is perched on through the overlapping pieces of wood. The depth is created through the overlap.

Rule of Thirds

This image is of a New York City officer on duty in the midst of a protest. The officer at the focus of the picture is perfectly positioned along the line of the left third of the picture. By thus aligning her so strongly, there is no disputing that she is the focus of the scene.
It also illustrates depth of field by focusing on the officer. In the background, there is the distorted image of other officers corralling protesters but by focusing on the officer there is provided an image of strength and power.

The photo of the man in blue brings him into strong focus by positioning him along the right vertical line of thirds. Even his arm is right along the horizontal third line and thus allows him to be the dominant element in the picture.


Photography is fascinating! There are so many other elements in each picture that could be analysed with regards to the impact that they give to the photograph. The skilled photographer is aware of all these composition elements. More than anything else, the skilled photographer has an eye for what works!


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