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Travel Photography – The Rule of Thirds

Last week I talked a little bit about the coveted life of a travel writer. As picturesque as it sounds, it takes a lot of work. If it were easy, why wouldn’t everyone be doing it? Sure would beat that six-by-six cubicle on the 32nd floor. So, what can you do to make your travel writing stand out? Accompany it with outstanding travel photography of course. What, did you think I was going to offer up some lavish blackmailing scheme?
I have been a photographer since I was 13. People always ask me for advice on taking pictures. They say, “Oh Daved, you’re pictures are so amazing. How can I ever be as incredible as you at taking pictures?” Ok, maybe they don’t say that word for word, but it’s close. The one tip I offer time and time again about taking great travel photos is, learn the rule of thirds.
The rule of thirds basically suggests envisioning a tic-tac-toe board in your view finder. The main subject should, ideally, fall on one of the intersecting points. If it can’t fall on one of the intersections, then it should fall on a line. Look at this picture of a girl I took in Jamaica. See how her eyes are just shy of the top line and her face falls on a line, that is the rule of thirds in action.

Look through some of your favorite magazine; you may be surprised how many photos fall into this rule. This one piece of advice will make your pictures go from snap shot to almost as good as mine.