Alignment

One of my personal favorite photographic tricks to employ is the use of alignment or juxtaposition of two or more elements in frame. I can attribute this to my inherent obsessive compulsive desire to always want to bring some order into a scene. It is one part of my personality that readily comes through in my photography. Whenever my wife and I are sitting at a restaurant I’ll catch myself folding a straw wrapper into a perfect square or aligning used sugar packets until there is equal space between them. Little nuances like this tend to manifest themselves behind my lens as well.

Another reason I enjoy this technique is that there is the potential for something interesting that can be coaxed out of almost every line and shape in the environment. Seemingly mundane settings with the right angle and alignment can produce very harmonic results. Another plus is that it is a great way to exercise the eye and a completely non-confrontational form of photography in the street, (although you will get funny looks while you compose the image… notice the absence of people in my personal examples below)

Next time you are out, my suggestion is to comb your environment for geometric shapes - lines, circles, squares, and angles. Once you spot a line, find another and connect the two (keep in the mind, lines are frequently not in the same geometric plane but they can still be juxtaposed by moving the camera forward or backward) the more opposing geometry you can manage to connect the greater depth your photograph will have.