Guidelines for Better Photographic Composition: Avoiding Mergers
|The merger of this tree with Dave's head is so
obvious, you probably think no one could avoid seeing it before snapping the shutter.
Remember: we see things in three dimensions, so it's easier than you might guess to focus
our eyes on the principal subject only and not see that background at all. Avoiding
mergers is our sixth guideline for better composition.
|You can be sure the camera always sees
mergers, so look for plain backgrounds before you pose your subject. In this case the
correction was simple because the two settings were only a few feet apart.
|This is a fun picture, but when we cut people in half or
trim their heads or feet, we've committed a border merger. This is often caused by poor
alignment of the photographer's eye in the camera viewfinder. To avoid border mergers,
line your eye up squarely behind the viewfinder and adjust the picture format to leave a
little space around everyone.
|Near mergers may not be quite as objectionable, but they
can steal attention from your center of interest. Near mergers are objects or lines that
are just too close to the principal subject. In this case the ball and umbrella tip are
|Let's correct these mergers by using a low angle, and we'll
use only one prop for simplicity. Make sure the Frisbee is held far enough away from
Karen's face to avoid another near merger. Well, those are the six guidelines for better
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