How to use negative space effectively

• Boats •

• Boats •
Picture by Mike Browne (from the video)

Composition that is not there!

The space that surrounds the subject and fills the gaps between important objects in your picture can be described as negative space. In some ways it defines the objects you see. In another way it is not really there. Instead the background is what you see.

The concept of negative space is important. The shape of your subject is created, at least in part, by the space around it. The space helps to define its character too. How much space surrounds your subject, and the type of space, all pass messages to the viewer about your shot.

Negative Space in Photography

Negative space is a strong artistic element yet it is not always obvious how to use it in your photography. Seeing negative space, and using it, takes a little practice and some ideas on how to place the elements in the shot. In the video Mike Brown shows us, despite the annoying balloon, how to use negative space and how to place your subject. He shows us how to use the balloon too – eventually.

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By Damon Guy (author and Photokonnexion editor)

Damon Guy - Netkonnexion

Damon Guy (Netkonnexion)

Damon is a writer-photog and editor of this site. He has run some major websites, a computing department and a digital image library. He started out as a trained teacher and now runs training for digital photographers.
See also: Editors ‘Bio’.

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2 responses to “How to use negative space effectively

  1. Great video tutorial from Mike. Thanks for sharing it, Damon. 🙂