Photography logo

Common Photo Composition Errors

Are your images coming out odd? These are the photo composition errors that you should seriously stop doing now.

By C.C. CurtisPublished 6 years ago 6 min read

For photography, there are certain ways that can make your photos come out fantastic. These are called photography compositions and they can be your best pals when it comes to taking the best damn photos you've ever taken. From filling the frame to patterns, textures, point of view, colors, leading lines, and everything else that falls under this category, that's what photography compositions are all about. It's the little aspects of taking great photos. All photographers are heavily into these methods and techniques, because they know these are what makes their photos come out amazing.

However, if you feel like your photos are no where near as beautiful compared to others', then you're probably doing something wrong. It's not what you're taking, but how you're taking these photos. When I said that all photographers take advantage of photography compositions, that's the reason why their photos are stunning. You're probably not taking photos properly! If you have no clue what mistakes you're doing, these are the common photo composition errors you're easily making whenever shooting and must be stopped at once.

Your images are blurry.

If your photos are coming out blurry, that's one major mistake right there. You have to realize that your photos are all turning out blurry. But what are you possibly doing wrong? Is your lens clean? Is your camera on the wrong setting? There can be multiple reasons for your blurry and unfocused photos.

However, there's always a way to fix this, and it's pretty simple. It can be that your camera is on the wrong setting, so make sure that it's not. Or give your lens a good cleaning. To thoroughly clean your lens, a cleaning kit is great, or just give your lens a simple wipe down with the end of your shirt. And never forget to focus right before shooting!

You're always shooting from a straight position.

Just how many times can you take photos in a straight position? Eventually, your images will look super boring and put your viewers and yourself to sleep. This makes it one of the photo composition errors you need to stop doing. Be creative when taking photos! Express point of view in numerous ways.

Take a photo of a tree from down on the ground. An up-close photo of a sunflower. A portrait of a child at eye-level view. And even a shot of the view from the highest building! There are so many methods in using point of view.

You don't know your camera's controls and settings.

Among the common photo composition errors, how are you even taking photos if you don't know your camera's controls and settings? Professional cameras feature a lot of settings and controls that you can all use to take various types of images. That's why you should know your camera like the back of your hand.

Once you've bought your camera, understand every single aspect of it. From the buttons to the settings and the diverse type of lenses, once you know your camera inside out, you'll be able to take photos much easier and your images will come out fantastic. This is also a photography tip for beginners!

Your subject is in the center of the frame.

It sounds normal to have your subject in the center of your frame... for some photos. Your subject shouldn't consistently be in the center of your frame, because your photos soon become dull and tasteless. Just how many times can you have your subject in the center of your photos?

That's why placing your subject away from the center of the frame is one of the best photography compositions many photographers are still using today. This way, not only is your subject the main focus, but you're also getting a piece of the subject's surroundings and background. This also invites other colors, shapes, and patterns into the frame while your subject is still in it!

Your subject is way too small in the frame.

When your subject is way too tiny in the frame, that's easily one of the photo composition errors that you're doing. For starters, why is your main subject small in the frame? Don't you want your subject to be the main focus and to gain most of the attention?

You can either fill the frame with your subject or place them in the corner of the frame. But never make your subject appear much smaller in the frame. This completely defeats the purpose of your subject being the main attraction in your images.

You're clashing colors in one photo.

Just like clashing colors in a single outfit, don't clash colors in a single photo—it's one of the worst photo composition errors ever. Sure, your photos can certainly be colorful, but there shouldn't be diverse shades of blue filling the frame in one photo. What are the viewers looking at? That blue subject? It's everywhere!

You want your photos to be colorful and to give off an array if vibrant colors! Search for nature settings, objects, and anything else that gives off multiple colors rather than one. The perfect example is a sunset over the ocean. While the sun is bright, it's giving off so many different colored shades and tones across the horizon and over the sea! Now that's a photo anyone is willing to gaze at.

The background is very distracting.

If you want all of the attention to be on your subject, then it's best that you don't take a photo of your subject with a very distracting background. If the background is cluttered with anything and everything from corner to corner, it can easily capture the audience's attention rather than them viewing the subject.

So, for street photography portraits, to capture the majority of the focus, use a simple background. The best photography composition methods for this is using negative space. This way, you're using a consistent background like grass, the sky, or a brick wall and place your main subject in front of it. So, while the background is still interesting, your subject is getting the majority of the attention.

There's nothing in the foreground.

When there's nothing in the foreground, this is definitely one of the photo composition errors that you're making. If you're taking photos of nothing that's in front of you but far out... that doesn't entirely make sense. You want a subject or a couple to be in your frame. If there's nothing in the foreground of your images, then there's no flavor in the photo!

You never want to leave the front of your photos empty. Always keep the front busy! When there's absolutely nothing in the foreground, your images can turn out to be very boring and uninteresting.

There is no focal point in your images.

When there are zero focal points in your photos, this can easily make the viewers lose their interest and attention. There's literally nothing that can possibly grab the viewer's eyes! There's no brilliant colors, interesting patterns, realistic textures, nothing that would make the viewers stop, stare, and say "wow!"

You want all of your photos to be filled with flavors, scents, and feelings. You want the audience to feel the spikes through an image of a porcupine. Smell the fruity scents through a photo of a fruit bowl. Through photography, your goal is to make viewers connect with the photos. So, if there are no focal points, there are no connections being made.

You're shooting sloping horizons.

Lastly, from the photo composition errors that you need to stop doing now are shooting sloping horizons. Have you ever seen photos of a sunset over the ocean or a stunning view of the mountains where it was kinda, obviously crooked? That's a major turn off to so many viewers.

You want all of your photos to be aligned! Especially your photos of the sunset over the ocean. That line where the sky and the ocean meets would be perfectly horizontal—not crooked. When it's ideally horizontal, this makes the photo turn out 100 percent better. And it's more realistic to look at, too.


About the Creator

C.C. Curtis

Enjoys lounging in NYC bars, loves traveling to foreign countries, and volunteers at the homeless shelter twice a month.

Enjoyed the story?
Support the Creator.

Subscribe for free to receive all their stories in your feed. You could also pledge your support or give them a one-off tip, letting them know you appreciate their work.

Subscribe For Free

Reader insights

Be the first to share your insights about this piece.

How does it work?

Add your insights


There are no comments for this story

Be the first to respond and start the conversation.

    C.C. CurtisWritten by C.C. Curtis

    Find us on social media

    Miscellaneous links

    • Explore
    • Contact
    • Privacy Policy
    • Terms of Use
    • Support

    © 2024 Creatd, Inc. All Rights Reserved.