Rule of the Thirds
Technique - Technique
Tuesday, 13 November 2007 21:49


The "Rule of the Thirds" is actually nothing else than a simplification of the "Golden Mean". The basic philosophy behind it is to avoid a symmetric composition which is usually pretty boring because the view is centered. The connection to the "Golden Mean" are the 4 possible crossings of the dividing lines (see the examples in illustration C1 and C2).
To counteract symmetry the "Rule of the Thirds" can follow two concepts:

First we can divide the image into two distinctive areas which cover 1:3 and 2:3 of the size of the picture.

Illustration C1

The second possible application is directly based on the crossing points of the Golden Mean. e.g Let's assume that we a landscape that is pretty charming but lacks a major feature or interesting geometric structure. The resulting image is a boring picture of an empty landscape. So what can we do here. Try to find an object which provides a contrast to the otherwise "monotonous" surrounding and place it at one of these crossing points. This object is an anchor for the first look and invites to a further observation of the scene.

Illustration C2