Dynamic CompositionsFrom Wikipedia:
The rule of thirds is a compositional rule of thumb in visual arts such as painting, photography and design. The rule states that an image should be imagined as divided into nine equal parts by two equally-spaced horizontal lines and two equally-spaced vertical lines, and that important compositional elements should be placed along these lines or their intersections. Proponents of the technique claim that aligning a subject with these points creates more tension, energy and interest in the composition than simply centering the subject would.
When attempting to make more dynamic or engaging compositions I always revert to this rule of thumb. It works every time. It's hard to believe that something so simple can make such a huge difference but it does. With this simple rule I've salvaged hundreds of photographs that I thought were heading to the trash.
How to use the rule of thirds in second part of post...
Follow The LinesLike the Wikipedia definition stated, all you really do is imagine that your photo is divided by four lines, two vertical and two horizontal (see image above). Next, while looking through your viewfinder, place the main element of the photograph where two of the lines intersect. Voila!
If you find it hard to imagine the lines then try looking through your viewfinder...most cameras have built in lines specifically for this purpose (most dSLR's that is). It really is that simple.
Below are some examples that follow this rule:
Anyone have any helpful tips on utilizing the rule of thirds or composition in general? I'd love to hear your thoughts.