Splitting the corner

I want to ask you an important question: Do you split the corner?

When composing an image, are you a fan of leading lines that move diagonally into the photograph from either the lower right or lower left hand corner of the image? I’m usually not thinking about rules or techniques when composing an image — I think about line and geometry, but somewhat subconsciously. I look for circles, squares, and triangles in the viewfinder.

Here are some shapes from the image above:

  • Squares & rectangles: The bus, bus windows, bus panels, sink
  • Circles and partial circles: Sink drains, steering wheel, star trails, lettering
  • Triangles: Foreground & sky, nearest bus window (with debris sticking out)

I’m starting to post images from my desert road trip, and noticed I split the corner on quite a few compositions. I’ll be paying closer attention to this detail when reviewing the rest of the images from the trip.

There’s not necessarily any rhyme or reason to the confluence of geometric shapes in any one image. Paying attention to your compositional patterns is an important part of growing as a photographer. I just keep putting the circles, squares, and triangles together until something tickles inside. Repeating something might just mean you really like it. Of course you don’t want to repeat the same riff over and over when you’re taking a solo. Keeping your style consistent but fresh is always a challenge.

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