Photography Tutorials and Articles

Centre or Off-Centre

Centre or Off-centre? That is the question!

Art is a subjective topic, and each artist is unique. This diversity makes art more dynamic. Therefore, the Centre or Off-centre is one of those highly argued topics among photographers.

In my view, we cannot put the art inside a box of rules and try to assess them according to those rules. Artists should be free to express their feelings. However, learning the rules helps artists to create more vital messages by using or breaking the rules.

Centre or Off-centre

Centre or Off-centre is one of the most agued topics in photography.

Centre or Off-centre rule?

There is not a simple answer to this question. However, I should shed some light on this debate by looking at what is happening behind the scene.

Centre Composition

When you place a subject in the centre of the frame, you actually ask your audiences to look just at the subject. As if the other parts of the image are not important. For instance, the composition in this photo tries to stop you from looking at other elements.

Centre Composition

centre or off-centre
Placing the subject in the centre of the frame prevents viewers to look at the other part of the image.

Off-centre Composition

Unlike the Centre composition, the off-centre composition invites your viewers to explore the entire image and discover the other elements in the frame and their relations. Here is the example:

Off-centre Composition

centre or off-centre
Off-centre composition invites viewers to look at the whole image, not just the subject.

I took these pictures using a Canon 5D MKIII, Canon EF 24-105 f4 lens at 1/1000sec, f5.6 and ISO 125. Therefore, every setting is the same, but the compositions are different. Then, I got two different expressions.

Centre or Off-centre? It is your artistic view. There is no right or wrong answer to this question. Use your talent and create a picture to express your thought.

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