EXPLOSIVE TRICKS FOR COMPOSITION
Making exciting and new compositions can be daunting, even frustrating. That frustration can be fuelled by a need to nail down the idea of good composition in an objective manner. A plus B equals C, so to speak.
There are tools and rules for composition that are solid and work a bit like that A plus B equals C objective: the Rule of Thirds, the Golden Mean, Dominant Eye theory, the Pyramid Foundation and more. All have value, and all fit nicely into that understandable formula, but they tend to produce the same kind of results over and over again.
But there’s more to it. I saw it in the compositions of artists who I admired. I learned that the creative processes was better served by not knowing exactly what to do in an A plus B equals C fashion, but by being willing to make mistakes to find the things that do work. It’s a bit like cooking: you set out to make a good dish, follow the direction, keep to the measurements and ingredients prescribed, and ka-pow, a great dish!
Yet if you make that dish repeatedly it becomes common, even boring. You could create another dish by applying the same cooking tips ‘n’ tricks, but eventually you’ll become complacent. The challenge isn’t there, and there are no surprises. You know that following those directions makes a good dish, but you want to make your own dish, to make something new.
To do this you could change the recipe, add new spices, take out spices, change the proportions of ingredients, change the ingredients completely. You’ll come up with something new, something that could surprise you! Of course, that surprise could be a bad one, but we have to take these risks to learn new things. But as with food, nothing should gets wasted – we learn from all our experiments in creating.