On those too rare occasions when we ask ourselves ‘why’ we are interested or perhaps driven to photographing a particular subject we find that we have no ready answer! If we have no explanation how are we going to build the image space in the best way possible to convey the feelings, emotions and / or the appropriate message?
In this context it maybe worthwhile to review the article relating to composition.
Here the choice of colors is mentioned but at the same time we should also be aware of the significance of the different major colors and their effect on us. Some of these are indicated below:
Black - implies power and perhaps authority.
White - indicates innocence and purity. In some cases the reflected light attracts the eye and thereby the attention of the viewer.
Red - produces an intense emotion, stimulates and attracts attention.
Pink - provides a romantic and tranquil feeling.
Blue - a popular and peaceful color but at the same time can also be cold and depressing.
Green - this color symbolizes nature and is calm and refreshing.
Yellow - an optimistic color yet can also be somewhat over-powering.
Purple - considered artificial but also romantic.
Brown – a solid color (of earth) but may also indicate sadness.
For further details of the psychology of colors you may wish to check the link at:
Another important topic that we need to be aware of in the construction of our image space is the understanding and use of symbols. This topic is frequently over-looked by photographers!
The ‘bringing together’ provided by a symbol delivers a unity or relevant information where otherwise chaos might exist. It may also provide a ‘center’ or a point of interest to a viewer of your image. No less important is the variety of meanings and relationships that symbols provide both to the photographer and viewer of the resulting image space.
An understanding and the correct use of these symbols are therefore important if we wish to ensure that we are conveying a clear ‘message’ and not simply confusion.
The correct composition of your image space will depend on both the subject matter and the way in which you, the photographer choose to convey your feelings / message on a technical level. It maybe of value at this stage to review the importance of light by rereading the article / BLOG on this subject.
The use of different colors (see above), tones, shapes and varied lines will create different impressions that need to be quite clear in the photographer’s mind when building the image space. A lack of clarity will probably not convey the ‘message’ desired!
Visual design as indicated above includes but is not limited to shapes, lines, textures and perspective.
These elements should provide clarity, order and meaning to your image.
For further invaluable information please refer to Freeman Patterson’s book ‘Photography for the joy of it’ and specifically the chapter ‘Symbols and Design’.
If you found this article interesting and / or are interested in more information please contact me via my email address at: