How to compose a photograph: see images where you never saw them before

How to compose a photograph: see images where you never saw them before

How to compose a photograph: start seeing images where you never saw them beforeKnowing how to compose a photograph is perhaps the most lesson any photographer will ever learn.

Framing, format, focal length and so many other compositional factors are crucial to the success of every image. Too often we forget that great cameras don’t take great pictures – great photographers do!

Your DSLR has a number of features that can help you take amazing photos, but only you can decide where to stand, which way to point the lens and when to fire the shutter. That’s why knowing how to compose a photograph is the most important thing you can learn as a photographer.

Our latest photography cheat sheet takes you through all the key steps of how to compose a photograph.

We start by looking at the different formats for your scene, where to place your subject within the frame, tips for drawing the viewer’s eye into the frame, and then move on to discuss ways to remove distractions and find the right perspective – among much more.

Master these fundamental elements of how to compose a photograph and not only will you gain confidence as a photographer and start seeing more images where you didn’t see them before – you will also have a solid foundation from which you can start experimenting with different styles and effects.

As usual, simply click on the infographic (left) to see the larger version of this cheat sheet, or drag and drop it to your desktop.

Due to popular demand, we’ve also provided smaller versions of each panel of the cheat sheet on page 2 of this post, which you can drag and drop to your desktop and print out individually.

PAGE 1: How to compose a photograph (free cheat sheet)
PAGE 2: Download the panels from our ‘How to compose a photograph’ cheat sheet


10 rules of photo composition (and why they work)
How to use a camera: exposure modes made simple
99 common photography problems (and how to solve them)

Rule of Thirds: use it and break it with confidence
15 common photography questions from beginners (and how to solve them)

  • Jace

    I have tried printing these 2 ways, one by clicking on the image and printing straight from the browser (chrome) and two by saving the image, opening it into photoshop and printing, and both times the words are fuzzy. I think your resolution you uploaded is too small? Its impossible to read.

  • Richardsphotos Hulbert

    It would be nice to be able to down load????????