Photo Study: Rule of thirds

A few days ago I saw a very nice post by Helen and her post  directed me to a wonderful post by Brenda on “the rule of thirds“.  A rule which is used to create a well balanced photograph. After all it is important to know where to place our object(s) in the frame.

Taken from Brenda’s text, “the rule of thirds is the element of composition that begins with dividing an image into thirds, horizontally and vertically, creating nine imagined sections. ”

On Brenda’s post I thoroughly enjoyed a video by Saurav Sinha about composition.

The theory is that if you place points of interest in the intersections or along the lines than your photo becomes more balanced and will enable a viewer of the image to interact with it more naturally. (

After going through the theory, I am presenting four images taken at different time points with different purposes.

In my first image, I wanted to include the colourful background (which was created due to clear sky and green branches)



In the second image, the object is crocus and the idea was to present crocuses from a close distance but also to give a view of crocus field.



One more image using the rule and adding some background.


Lastly an example where the photo is centred.


Some interesting information:

The rule of thirds was first written down by John Thomas Smith in 1797. In his book Remarks on Rural Scenery, Smith quotes a 1783 work by Sir Joshua Reynolds, in which Reynolds discusses, in unquantified terms, the balance of dark and light in a painting. John Thomas Smith then continues with an expansion on the idea, naming it the “Rule of thirds”

Smith’s conception of the rule is meant to apply more generally than the version commonly explained today, as he recommends it not just for dividing the frame, but also for all division of straight lines, masses, or groups. On the other hand, he does not discuss the now-common idea that intersections of the third-lines of the frame are particularly strong or interesting for composition.


I hope I have done justice and created interesting images. I would love to read any comments.

Thanks for reading.


26 thoughts on “Photo Study: Rule of thirds

  1. Great post regarding a topic I have written about too! I suggest it be called the ‘formula of thirds’ and believe there are no ‘rules’ in art. After all, it is only 1 of several composition formulas. The ‘golden ratio’ is similar but the center lines are a bit closer to the center instead of equal thirds … closer to what you show here. Then there is the spiral, triangle and centered formulas too!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Even with a simple camera we can use this rule. After practicing for a while I learned how to get depth while using my mobile camera.
      And that little master is not just sweet but super clever. He was wild and free but was enjoying the fruits provided for a big money in a zoo.
      I will make a separate post on this little one.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I am glad you got some proper training.
      I learned about photography through photo challenges and by going through photography blog. I would prefer some training but it’s hard to find which suits my free time.
      Thank you for visiting and spending time on my blog. Nice meeting you.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. NYIP. It’s online. They give you 18 months to finish one class. I did one in about 6 months. You do all course reading, quizzes, tests, and submitting photo projects online. The best part for me was submitting photos and having an instructor critique them. They give you an audio file to click on to hear what the instructor says about the photos. I know a lot of people who learn through utube videos and other sources online. I like taking a class because it forced me to stick to it and take it seriously.

        Liked by 1 person

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