Weekly Photo Challenge: Rule of Thirds

As one of the first lessons we learn when starting out in photography, the rule of thirds plays a big part.  It is how we position a photograph to bring out the best visually and is more pleasing to the eye so gives the photo balance.  Balance sounds funny when using a third rule, you would think it would be half but strangely no.

By imagining two horizontal and vertical lines, much like in the game of Naughts and Crosses, when taking a photo be mindful of placing objects within the scene either one third or two thirds the way into the photo, either horizontally or vertically.  This balances the scene out in a more pleasing way and highlights the object you place there.

Also to highlight a specific subject more effectively, put it at one of the intersections between the two intersecting grid lines.  If photographing a single subject, ie a flower, it is better to place it one third into the photo leaving space for the rest of the scene rather than putting it in the middle which is what we tend to do.

In landscapes be mindful to place either the sky or ground either two thirds of the scene or one depending on which you want  to emphasize more.

In my picture this week I took a photo of Shornecliffe Pier last June which shows how I positioned the photo.  The end of the pier is two thirds across the scene.  The 2nd lamp post sits on the one third vertical line and horizontally at the same intersection the pier itself starts off at this point.

Of course its not always easy to do this but by trying to place at least one part of the scene in this way will help to have a more effective photo.

shorncliffe pier wpc

For more WPC Rule of Thirds photo please go to the link here.




Categories: Black & White, Weekly Photo ChallengeTags: , , , , , , , , ,


  1. Wonderful photograph! And thank you for so clearly explaining the rule ☺

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Great example of the “rule” of thirds Kaz. I also really like the photo and what you have done to it.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Great tips and stunning picture! Thanks for this!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I see what you mean, it’s a good photograph to use in your explanation. I can never seem to get the rule of thirds right, so thanks for the user-friendly explanation. Practice makes perfect they say, so here I go again!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I love your explanation. Very clear especially when you have an example like this. I don’t know that I would have thought to have the pier only 2/3rds of the way into the photo but it is very effective. I will have to keep that in the back of my mind. Lovely image!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Its a great shot and I love the way you have the looping over lamposts clearly in shot. My brain thinks there is too much sky for it to be in thirds however – at the left edge of the image where the pier comes in is at a third line, but the building at the end has tapered down and away from the line due to the angle and the distance – does that make sense?

    I see what you mean about the horizontal roof line at that point, but the eye/brain naturally goes to the lightest or darkest point in the image, and the dark line underneath the white fence is where my brain is taking “its” line from and therefore getting squirrelly about the fractions 🙂

    Also the point of the roof of the building is smack bang in the middle vertically 🙂 What I am badly trying to explain is my brain has dissected this image in a different way to yours visually 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Well said. It’s a really useful rule of thumb for composing pictures.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. hi Kaz, i’m a bit astounded looking at your foto – is that redcliffe, queensland? it surely must be. its quite strange for me looking at that photo as redcliffe is my home when i’m not living in China. the clouds in the picture are quite surreal and is that moreton in the background? apart from being an amazing photo, it puts me in a bit of a time warp as the colours seem all very old-world and the mysterious clouds hold magic….. it both looks so much like redcliffe and so much doesn’t at the same time…. thank you, Debbie

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Debbie thanks for stopping by and your follow. I’m so glad you did. Its actually Shornecliffe jetty down from Redcliff i had just saved the file to the wrong name but it is Qld taken late one afternoon with the setting sun peering through the wooden pylons.


      • hi kaz, i was really confused because it looked so much like redcliffe jetty but it didnt. redcliffe jetty has been renovated a lot whereas i think shornclifef is still the same. i love the shorncliffe jetty also and the park nearby. its still the same bay i guess and those jetties have a similarity about them. it s funny as i asked my daughter too – is this really redcliffe? she thought it was too… great shot anyhow.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Thanks, in one of my old posts I did have Redcliffe Pier there as well on the same trip. It certainly is a beautiful place 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

    • Oops didn’t realise I’d put the wrong pier name in the actual post. Sorry for the confusion Debbie. I’ve changed it now 🙂


  9. It’s great to be reminded of home in this grey cold rainy winters day. the two days of blue skies we had over here over the Spring Festival have been lost and its back to the ever present grey. title or not, its beautiful seeing the waters of home. 🙂


  10. Great explanation and I love the processing of this photo.

    Liked by 1 person

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