Discover What Is the 1/3 Rule in Photography

In photography, the 1/3 rule is a guideline that states that an object or person should take up 1/3 of the frame in order to be considered properly composed. This rule can be applied to any type of photo, but is especially important in portraiture and landscape photography.

The 1/3 rule is based on the golden ratio, which is a mathematical proportion that occurs naturally in many aspects of life. The golden ratio is often represented as a spiral, with each new turn getting smaller and smaller. When applied to photography, the 1/3 rule says that your subject should occupy approximately 1/3 of your frame, with the other 2/3 being filled by the background.

While the 1/3 rule is a good general guideline to follow, it’s not set in stone. Sometimes breaking the rules can lead to more interesting and creative compositions. So don’t be afraid to experiment!

Rule of Thirds

The rule of thirds is often cited as a guideline for composing visual images, particularly in the field of photography. The main idea behind the rule is to place the points of interest in your composition along the intersections of these imaginary lines, rather than dead center. This creates more tension, energy and interest in the image, as well as leading the viewer’s eye around the frame.

When applied to photography, the rule of thirds dictates that you should position your subject off-center, leaving one third of empty space in front of them and two thirds behind. This produces a more dynamic and interesting photo than if your subject were perfectly centered within the frame. In addition to placing your subject off-center, you can also use the rule of thirds to compose other aspects of your photo such as horizon lines and buildings.

While the rule of thirds is a great guideline to follow when composing your photos, it’s important to remember that there are no hard and fast rules in photography (or art in general). So don’t be afraid to experiment with different compositions and break away from traditional “rules” like this one!


Composition is one of the most important aspects of photography, yet it can be one of the most difficult to master. The 1/3 rule is a simple and effective way to improve your compositions and create more visually appealing images.

The 1/3 rule states that the main subject of your image should be placed at or near one of the intersections formed by dividing your frame into thirds, both horizontally and vertically. This placement creates a more balanced and pleasing composition than if the subject were placed in the center of the frame.

In addition to creating a more visually appealing composition, following the 1/3 rule can also help you avoid common compositional pitfalls such as centering your subject or having too much empty space in your frame. By placing your subject off-center, you can make use of negative space to create tension and interest in your image.

While there are no hard and fast rules in photography, understanding and following guidelines like the 1/3 rule can help you compose better images that are more likely to resonate with viewers. So next time you’re framing up a shot, take a moment to consider where you might place your subject using this simple but powerful guideline.

Fill the Frame

In photography, the 1/3 rule is a general guideline which states that the subject of an image should occupy about one-third of the frame. This rule can be useful for beginners who are still learning how to compose their shots, as it provides a simple way to achieve a pleasing composition.

Of course, there are no hard and fast rules in photography, and experienced photographers may choose to break the 1/3 rule in certain cases. However, in general, following this rule can help you create more visually appealing images.

So why does the 1/3 rule work? Essentially, it helps to create a sense of balance within an image. When your subject occupies roughly one-third of the frame, it leaves enough negative space around them so that they don’t appear cramped or crowded. At the same time, this placement also ensures that your subject is given sufficient attention and isn’t lost in their surroundings.

There are a few different ways to apply the 1/3 rule when composing your shots. One option is to align your subject with one of the thirds lines on your viewfinder or LCD screen (most cameras have these grid lines built-in). Alternatively, you could simply place your subject off-center within the frame – this is often considered more aesthetically pleasing than centering them perfectly in the middle. Experiment with both approaches and see which results you prefer!

Leading Lines

In photography, the 1/3 rule is a guideline which suggests that an image should be divided into thirds, both horizontally and vertically, so that there are three parts to the composition. The theory behind this is that it creates a more balanced and pleasing image.

When applying the 1/3 rule, you should place your subject at one of the intersections of these imaginary lines. This will help to draw the viewer’s eye into the image and create a sense of movement. Leading lines are another important compositional element which can help to lead the viewer’s eye around an image. These can be any kind of line, such as those created by roads, fences or even shadows.

The 1/3 rule is just a guideline and it’s not necessary to strictly adhere to it in every instance. Sometimes breaking the rules can lead to more interesting and creative results!


The universe is so large that even light takes a long time to travel across it. It takes eight minutes for light from the sun to reach Earth, and more than four years for light to reach us from the nearest star outside our solar system. That star is called Proxima Centauri, and it’s part of a triple-star system called Alpha Centauri.

If you could travel at the speed of light (which is impossible), it would still take you more than four years to get there! And even if you could somehow manage to go faster than the speed of light (also impossible), you’d never be able to reach the end of outer space because it doesn’t have an end. Outer space goes on forever…

There’s a lot we don’t know about outer space because we haven’t been able to explore very much of it yet. We’ve sent probes and satellites out into orbit around Earth and beyond, but they can only travel so far before they lose contact with us. And while some brave astronauts have ventured out into space, they’ve only done so within our own solar system. There are many mysteries yet to be solved about outer space… but that just makes exploring it all the more exciting!

Keep Horizons Straight

There are a few reasons why you might want to keep horizons straight in your photos. First, it can help to create a sense of stability in the image. When our eyes see an image with a crooked horizon, it can feel as if something is off balance or unstable. A straight horizon helps to ground the image and give it a feeling of solidity.

Second, keeping horizons straight can help to avoid distracting elements in your photo. If there are objects near the horizon line that are not perfectly aligned with it, they can appear to be leaning over or falling off-kilter. This can be visually distracting and take away from the impact of your overall composition.

Third, placing the horizon in the middle of the frame can sometimes make for more interesting compositions. When you place things asymmetrically within a frame, it tends to create more visual interest than when everything is evenly balanced. By placing the horizon off-center, you automatically create some visual tension that can add excitement and energy to an otherwise mundane scene.

Of course, there will be times when breaking this rule makes more sense than following it rigidly – after all, rules are meant to be broken! But as a general guideline, try following The 1/3 Rule next time you’re out shooting landscape photos and see how it affects your compositions.(

Break the Rules

The “rule of thirds” is probably the most well-known guideline in photography. It states that an image should be divided into thirds, both horizontally and vertically, and that the main subject should be placed at one of the intersections or along one of the lines. While this can certainly create a pleasing composition, it’s not always necessary (or even desirable) to adhere to it rigidly. Sometimes placing your subject off-center can add tension or drama to an image, so don’t be afraid to experiment with different placements.

Similarly, leading lines are often used to guide viewers’ eyes through an image and towards the main subject. But again, there’s no hard and fast rule that says you have to use them in every photo you take. Sometimes a more chaotic composition can actually be more interesting than a perfectly ordered one. So play around with different arrangements until you find something that feels right for each individual image.

There are also general guidelines about things like exposure, white balance, and focus that can help you get started on taking technically sound photos

I'm a photography enthusiast with a passion for classic film cameras and writing. I believe that photography is a powerful tool for storytelling and I strive to create images that are evocative and meaningful. I hope you enjoy my work!