31 Images with Outstanding Composition :: Digital Photo Secrets

31 Images with Outstanding Composition

by David Peterson 12 comments

Great composition is one of those things that you almost can't define - it's either there, or it isn't. Almost anyone - even a non-photographer - can spot outstanding composition, though it's not always obvious what specific qualities actually made that photo a great one. That's why the so-called "rules" of composition are really just guidelines - once you've mastered them, you can feel free to ignore or use them where you see fit. Here are some examples of images with outstanding composition - see if you can pinpoint the reasons why.

[ Top image Stripes... by Flickr user Julian E...]

  • E-330
  • 100
  • f/4.5
  • 0.006 sec (1/160)
  • 150 mm

Que miras? / What are you looking at? by Flickr user *atrium09

  • Nikon D50
  • f/8.0
  • 0.004 sec (1/250)
  • 40 mm

In the Neighborhood by Flickr user CiaoChessa

Let there be light by Flickr user hvhe1

    MARIAGE / WEDDING : The Gate ! :o) by Flickr user Sebastien LABAN

    • Canon EOS 5D Mark II
    • 50
    • f/10.0
    • 0.1 sec (1/10)
    • 20 mm

    On the Red Carpet by Flickr user angus clyne

    • Kodak V530 Zoom
    • 80
    • f/4.5
    • 0.001 sec (1/1600)
    • 6.2 mm

    Dreaming............. by Flickr user Nicolas Valentin

    • Leica DIGILUX 3
    • 100
    • f/3.5
    • 0.002 sec (1/640)
    • 50 mm

    Growin' up by Flickr user Sator Arepo

    some of the other ones by Flickr user *omnia*

    • Nikon D300
    • 320
    • f/8.0
    • 0.017 sec (1/60)
    • 105 mm

    There is not one blade of grass, there is no color in this world that is not intended to make us rejoice by Flickr user sharaff

    • Panasonic DMC-FZ38
    • 80
    • f/8.0
    • 0.002 sec (1/640)
    • 17.4 mm

    A cultural trip to the heart of the nobility by Flickr user B℮n

    • Nikon D80
    • 400
    • f/5.6
    • 0.004 sec (1/250)
    • 200 mm

    Passeggiata by Flickr user Massimo Feliziani

    • Canon EOS 10D
    • 100
    • f/4.0
    • 0.001 sec (1/800)
    • 17 mm

    yellow hill (a.k.a. find the bee) by Flickr user Sara Heinrichs (awfulsara)

    • Nikon D90
    • f/3.5
    • 0.001 sec (1/1250)
    • 60 mm

    How sharp is your blue ? by Flickr user Teo Morabito

    • Nikon D700
    • 500
    • f/3.0
    • 0.013 sec (1/80)
    • 105 mm

    Congratulations Manny Pacquiao ~ the Philippines' Pride!!! M a b u h a y !!! by Flickr user .I Travel East.

    Feliz San Valentín y semana - Happy Valentine & week by Flickr user Pilar Azaña

    • Canon EOS Digital Rebel XSi
    • 200
    • f/1.4
    • 0.002 sec (1/500)
    • 30 mm

    Untitled by Flickr user kelly.marie

    P L A T I N U M by Flickr user HaMaD.BLaZe

    • Nikon D40X
    • 1600
    • f/5.0
    • 0.025 sec (1/40)
    • 38.9 mm

    i didn't know you meant forever by Flickr user Love, Loren

    • Nikon D300
    • 200
    • f/16.0
    • 0.067 sec (1/15)
    • 20.6 mm

    Lake Louise Canoes by Flickr user Panorama Paul

    Visual Disorder - (Dubai, UAE) by Flickr user blame_the_monkey

    • Canon EOS 5D
    • 100
    • f/3.2
    • 0.001 sec (1/1000)
    • 50 mm

    Waiting For Spring by Flickr user Loren Zemlicka

    • Canon EOS 5D Mark II
    • 200
    • f/8.0
    • 0.167 sec (1/6)
    • 58 mm

    Faultlines - Mt. Tamalpais, Marin County, California by Flickr user PatrickSmithPhotography

    • Canon PowerShot G12
    • 80
    • f/4.5
    • 0.004 sec (1/250)
    • 25 mm

    Vineyard Rotenberg by Flickr user Habub3

    The green eye by Flickr user Nespyxel

    Yellow Warbler! by Flickr user JRIDLEY1

    The composition by Flickr user ciostyle

    Lower Antelope Canyon - Glowing (Page; Arizona) by Flickr user gabri_micha

    • Canon EOS 400D Digital
    • 400
    • f/7.1
    • 0.002 sec (1/500)
    • 235 mm

    '8' by Flickr user Chrissie64

    • E-PM1
    • 200
    • f/5.0
    • 0.003 sec (1/320)
    • 14 mm

    Red Wall by Flickr user pvanhala

    Pigeon from Angers by Flickr user IoanBacivarov

    Most people think this post is Awesome. What do you think?


    1. Richard says:

      Thanks David-your tips and totorials are most helpful!

    2. Tsebo Nate says:

      Once again, thanks Dave.

    3. malwes says:

      i am paying more attention to composition now,your article has helped me alot.

    4. Ed Lada says:

      I'm an 80 year old retired commercial photographer and I grew up with the rule of "thirds" and the "S" curve.
      Don't know where I learned it but those were the rules I lived by for composition.


    5. Rajnikumar Shah says:

      Each photograph was outstanding. Would have enjoyed knowing in detail about the photographer and other details.

    6. Sue Fenton says:

      Composition is one of the most interesting aspects of photography for me and I seem to be drawn to this aspect first and foremost. There is so much to learn with photography !!

    7. john cole says:

      I am now in my late 70s and find that using the screen on the Camera I tend to forget to look in all the corners of the shot so take a lot of photographs with messy background. I have now purchased a bridge camera and can go back to using the eyepiece and find that I now look in all corners.

    8. Dickson says:

      i like the composition

    9. Jan morris says:

      I look through the viewer at subject and then move camera around to see that the subject will appear in the most interesting way. Since I started doing this my quality has greatly improved. If nothing else, I sometimes tilt the camera at an angle.

    10. Phil Anderson says:

      I enjoyed this article very much. I must pay more attention to composition. To me the trick is to compose the shot in your mind first. Then make if happen. Learning to do that quickly is a challenge I have not yet mastered. Too often I look at my work and see that I have taken a picture of an object with no regard for what is around that object. This article has helped me see how important composition is.
      Thanks for the tip.

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    About David Peterson
    David Peterson is the creator of Digital Photo Secrets, and the Photography Dash and loves teaching photography to fellow photographers all around the world. You can follow him on Twitter at @dphotosecrets or on Google+.