Composition in photography refers to the way the different elements are arranged within the image, so it looks balanced and complete.
Here are some common guidelines you can follow to help improve your photos.
Rule of thirds
Imagine that your image is divided into 9 equal parts by 2 vertical and 2 horizontal lines. Most cameras can display this grid in live view mode, so check the settings and enable it.
According to the rule of thirds, the important elements in the scene have to be placed along one or more of the lines, ideally where the lines intersect.
Intuitively, we tend to place our subject in the middle, but positioning it off center, using this rule will ensure a more attractive composition.
Including foreground is an effective way to add depth to your photos and make them appear more 3 dimensional.
In the example on the right, the sunflower in front adds a lot of visual interest and creates a 3D feel to the image.
Try looking for such sources of foreground interest, as a way to to create compelling images.
Use a contrasting background to focus the attention on your subject.
Avoid busy backgrounds, as they can create distraction in the scene.
If you’re not able to reposition your subject against a better background, feel free to move around and shift the camera angle to leave out distracting elements.
Adding a natural frame is another great way to accomplish depth.
Look for elements like windows, arches, bushes or tree branches to frame the scene.
The frame doesn't always need to surround the entire image to effectively enhance the composition.
Leading lines guide the viewer's eye through the image and help link the important elements in it.
From paths and rivers to walls and patterns, anything can serve as leading lines within a photo.
Fill the frame
Filling the frame with your subject, leaving little or no space around the face, is very effective in certain cases.
It eliminates distractions and allows the viewer to explore details that wouldn't be visible if photographed from further away.