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Case Study - Positioning the Subject

Lesson 42 from: Mastering Photographic Composition and Visual Storytelling

Chris Weston

Case Study - Positioning the Subject

Lesson 42 from: Mastering Photographic Composition and Visual Storytelling

Chris Weston

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Lesson Info

42. Case Study - Positioning the Subject


Class Trailer

Your 10,001st Photograph


Camera Gear


Piece of Gear We Always Forget


Be a Storyteller


Finding Ideas For Photography - Know Your Subject


Cae Study - Why Are Zebras Black and White Striped


Photograph What You Love


See the Extraordinary in Ordinary Things


Lesson Info

Case Study - Positioning the Subject

in central Japan, about four hours northwest of Tokyo. Hidden deep in a place the name of which jego Cordani means Hell's Valley amid steep cliffs and steaming rivers. And at an altitude of 850 meters, there is a special place where a unique band of wild macaques have discovered an irresistible rest flight from the biting, cold, inviting hot springs. I love photographing these cheeky little monkeys. Their facial expressions make them ideal portrait subjects in the unusual location lends itself to more intriguing stories. How these stories unfold depends entirely on where you position the subject. In this first image, I've positioned the macaque using the rule of thirds. This opens the space to the left of the main subject, where we discover hiding under the rocks and sheltering from the snow a second macaque. So in this example, the off centre composition reveals this subplot by taking you from point A to point B. Moving to the second image. This is Mork classic portrait shot. The stor...

y doesn't go beyond the individual. Instead, we connect with him second guessing his thoughts and feelings by placing the subject centrally in the frame. I've drawn your eye to the most important aspect, which is the macaques face and eyes, and I keep you there. Your gaze remains fixed on him, so very simply, just by switching between centre and off center positioning, you can completely change the visual narrative. But this is a very simplified way of thinking about composition, to take your photographs even higher levels as another technique I want to show you. And to do that, I'm going to go to one of my favorite landscape locations.

Ratings and Reviews

Edmund Cheung

Perhaps the style of presentation and simple, short, and direct messaging does not "jive" with some; but others may really love this. Yes the production of each episode is stylized and perhaps a bit formal (like a TV Show?), but there is something to be said about it. Perhaps this is not meant for professional photographers? I think of myself as decent amateur / high level photographer. I found lots of great nuggets of wisdom and inspiration from this. Especially when I an in a rut for creativity. Yes I have heard all these concepts and ideas before. BUT it is always great to hear and see a different way of presentation and voice. Please do NOT take the naysayer reviews as the end all. You should judge for yourself and watch a few episodes. If the style and content click for you, I would highly recommend this course.

Kai Atherton

While I am perhaps more advanced in my photography then this course. It is always great to be able to go back to fundamentals and remind ourselves of the basic principles, and even camera function. I thoroughly enjoyed this course and Chris's other. It is a great motivational jumpstart when lacking fresh creative idea's.

Abdullah Alahmari

Thanks a lot to mr. Chris Weston This course is great and It is a 🌟 🌟 🌟 🌟 🌟 course for me. Beside the other course ( mastering the art of photography ) both courses are Complementing to each other and highly recommended.

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