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Chapter 4 Assignments

It’s time to work on creating images with intention. These next assignments will help you gain a better foothold as you take your photography to the next level.

The Crayola challenge

Grab yourself a box of Crayolas, any size or variation. Pick one crayon per week and take photos that highlight that color. You might think this is easy, but wait until you start selecting colors from the box like eggplant, hot magenta, or screamin’ green.

Frame it up

A frame within a frame is a fun and interesting way to compose an image. I recommend practicing with easy-to-frame locations such as doorways, arches, and windows. Once you’ve mastered the composition, consider using people, buildings, or reflections to frame your subject.

Build a leading-line portfolio

Some of the strongest compositional elements available to a photographer are lines, and it’s time for you to find a few of your own. Build a small portfolio of 10 to 20 images using leading lines, such as vertical, horizontal, and converging. Next, look for images that are more complex, with two or more lines dominating the image. Make sure to compose your frames so the lines lead viewers’ eyes to—not away from—the subject.

Apply the rule of thirds

The rule of thirds is probably the most fundamental of all compositional rules, and for that reason it’s important to set up your camera to help you achieve the best results. Most cameras ship from the manufacturer with the viewfinder or live-view grids enabled. However, if you’re unable to see the grid through the viewfinder, refer to the camera’s user manual to learn how to turn on the feature. The grid can be extremely helpful when composing images using the rule of thirds.

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