Composition #8 – Using Triangles

The humble triangle can be a useful compositional device to improve your pictures.

Upright or inverted, they act as extra lead-in lines or can encapsulate the subject being photographed.

The triangle can be formed by tangible straight lines, or objects at each virtual corner.

Placing three objects in triangular formation is much stronger than the eye “bouncing” between two subjects – odd number repetition is best if possible.


[Bringing In The Catch – three boats in the harbour form the corners of a flattish triangle, also main interest in the picture is restricted to the middle third strip]

[Fungi and Treestump – here, the main content of the picture forms a natural inverted triangle, albeit made from circular objects (repetition with different sizes). I was careful to line up the top “side” with the edge of the frame]

[Overthrow – the players make up most of this upright triangle with their lineout jump – but it is capped off by the all-important ball. Neither of them caught it!]

[Louvre Geometry – this one is a special case, with two triangles (outlined). The lower, inverted one is very obvious, but the upper part is just as important]

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