09 FIND BALANCE
Watch your weight – too many powerful elements in one place will unbalance a shot
Pay attention to how much weight each main element has and balance the image accordingly
After you have located the main subjects and focal points of your image, along with the surrounding clean negative space, the next step is finding balance.
Balance uses the visual weight of the subjects and how they interact with the space around them. Basically this means considering how strong the pull of each subject on the eye is. For example, a bright yellow bird sitting in a dark purple bush will have a lot of visual weight due to the colour contrast between the bird and the foliage. A volcano erupting in early morning light will also have a lot of weight due to the fact that it is such a powerful subject – viewers won’t be able to resist looking at it. An area of extreme tonal contrast (an area with white tones and black tones in close proximity) will also draw the eye.
The idea is to learn and pay attention to how much weight each main element has and balance the image accordingly. That could mean that a small yellow bird will balance out a large, neutral-coloured barn in the opposite corner of an image. Even though the bird is much smaller than the building, because of the colours involved it could have the same visual weight as the barn, or possibly even more.
EXPOSURE 92 secs, f/11, ISO3200 LENS Nikon AF-S 16-35mm f/4G ED VR
EXPOSURE 1/80 sec, f/8, ISO50 LENS Nikon AF-S 16-35mm f/4G ED VR