Composition in photography or any art really is everything and although you should keep practicing cropping inside the camera while shooting it can be done in post photoshop. The best way to practice cropping photos is to either try various types of crops in photoshop where you can relax and think or shoot still subjects, like architecture or landscapes, using a tripod. Tripod is a brilliant piece of gear that slows you down and makes you think. It also lets you see a still frame of a composed image for a longer time which should be enough to decide whether it is good or you need to recompose. In this video I will show you how I crop my images and why I do so this way or another based on an example of the same photo cropped in many various ways to achieve different moods and aims.
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hi guys this is Pont aeri from a d'tetramand welcome to my next Photoshop tutorial today I want to talk to you about cropping and show you how important is the knowledge of cropping and composition because cropping is basically composition so you know people say that you should be able to crop in camera and they are very right so as much as you can try to crop in camera and the best way to practice that is to use a tripod which which will slow you down and practice on things that don't move like architecture or landscapes you know portrait photography is a bit tricky because the person will move you need to chase the focus and people also occupy piz trying to focus in the eyes then they often forget about the composition and you know as Ansel Adams said there is nothing worse than a sharp picture of a fuzzy concept so if you end up with a very beautiful sharp and technically correct picture but the composition is of installation picture so don't forget to work on your composition and cropping actually is a fantastic exercise for for learning and understanding how composition works because you know when you're out there and shooting you don't have really time to think you need to act so it's just like you know like a martial artist you know you don't hit it's your face that hits you don't think when you press the shot you just have to feel it because there is no time now and you know any comfort of your house when you have time you know make some coffee put some pictures on and try to recruit them so what I want to show you today is I want to show you different types of crops on one picture that this picture is a picture of Katie then I'm shooting recently and she wanted a picture – a professional headshot but she wanted a headshot for her website that will not be too corporate but at the same time will look professional so also she wanted to crop it in a sort of a circle fashion so I needed to create something that that has enough space around her – to crop it into a circle so let me show you the original photo and this is a row file and that's from a camera straight from the camera and we were shooting in the park there was a beautiful light over there there was a bit of a shade a bomb above above our heads there was a tree and I was using a flash to fill that light and I have a beautiful rim light around her and it all looks fantastic you know but the background is not the best is it's a bit on the dull side besides she has this line of trees going through her head I think these were one of our initial shots to establish the light and you know and then find a good spot to shoot but she's a lovely expression in this photo should I love that photo and you know she said I wish there was a different background well that's you this for your photoshop skills come in you know what I did is I took the photo and cut it out and I I put one of my photos I took in in central Tokyo and showed all my it's a really cool photo of reflections of buildings and I put it in a background we were shooting in different place and she really liked the reflections of buildings so I thought it could be a perfect shot for that so I composited about both photos but you can see that the framing the cropping is is a bit unfortunate I mean it does look cool it could be cool poster if there was some text around going on here or some kind of an advertisement but there is too much room for it to be a success for headshot so don't you know don't focus on how the father looks because it doesn't look cold in those buildings and reflection but the main subject here is to sell Katie because you know that's a profile photo so I I went ahead and I started to do some cropping now I use the photo that you saw in the beginning that's a very tight crop so the first thing I want to tell you is that you know don't be afraid of cutting people's heads off the tops of the heads now the trick to let me just pull my pen here trick to cutting someone head off and now it sounds a bit horrific but um oops significant let me adjust my pen and bring it back to earth to a full screen there we go okay and you know when you cut the head somewhere here right make sure that there is enough of spice under the chin because if you cut it too close okay like this you can see that there is she's like choking you know she's I mean it looks like she's been beheaded so it doesn't really look nice it just makes her head look big and unproportional so when you you know when you cut someone ahead of the top of the heads it's a brilliant brilliant technique is always you know often seen in movies it just brings people into your like a private space you just makes them almost three-dimensional especially when you have a blurry background because you know that sort of separates them from it and makes them more powerful so that that kind of photos are you know they're very very successful because they're really powerful but you have to be careful and very sensitive on how you actually cut it so you know when you cut someone someone's head and the top make sure you leave enough of room now the cool thing in Photoshop is that you know you can set the framing or like a window of your Photoshop to certain dimensions and then you can keep zooming with your zoom wheel and see how other other types of crop would work for this photo so see for example here when I move this photo to the top and you know I cut too much of her head she's showing too much of a neck if I cut it like that it just doesn't look right you know it is just something missing I mean you need to give people a bit of room under the chin so if I was cutting it really tight I'll probably go for something like this you know to show a bit of a neck because you know women have beautiful legs and and you know just a bit of a bit of the hair so it frames the hair that the head and the most important thing which is a face you know and I was just probably corporate ladder so there's a lot of different types of crops in each picture and you really should just explore it so this is you know this one is a more of a squared crop and that was meant for social websites social media because of all of the sites like LinkedIn Facebook Google+ and all the sites have square square sized I mean square shaped profile photos so if you upload a photo with different dimensions a different ratio it will just not fit and the program will cut it for you which is not very successful usually usually doesn't do a good job so here I left a bit of space above her head you know to give her a bit of a breathing space I mean I could cut it tighter but I just thought it will be too cramped too too much going on I think you know sometimes it's good to introduce a bit of an just lightness too following that the gap just above her head works perfectly because you know it just gives this feel of a large city of her being outside and you know having a having a shot taking somewhere in a really cool place this one is a bit too claustrophobic for me and also the problem is this it sort of well you know I would need to because that's a rectangular now shape I would need to probably cut a bit more here or here and I would probably be left with not enough space between the shoulder and the end of the photo you know she's been pushed to the left a bit which opens space on the right hand side which is where the light is coming from you know there's also important that she's facing that way so the light is coming from the light is coming from here and she's facing this way right see all her face is turned this way so you want to leave a bit of room in here it's breathing room it just looks a bit more natural you know if I if I just unlock it to play quick and and move it to the right you see it just I don't know it looks it looks claustrophobic it looks a bit odd she's choking there's not enough space you know you need to give people space that picture breathe is you know in picture needs to breathe so another one there's a circular one and I put her here in the middle and I did it on purpose because well that's a circle and photo so I wanted to emphasize the dissymmetry and if you look closely you know her body is sort of twisted because her shoulders are aligned this way and her eyes are aligned this way now that introduces a triangle which is a very powerful feature in the photo and that sort of contradicts the shape of a photo because the photo is circular since this is a very strong element within the soft soft shape of a circle another thing that you need to note this you should know is that buildings here see that they aren't they also you know they they form diagonal straight lines that sort of you know push towards you push a brane towards thinking that there is somewhere a triangular shape because the lines gonna meet somewhere at some point so you know look at the geometry of a photo and you know think about the overall balance and you know that the shape of the funnel works perfectly wizard whether a necklace works perfectly with the cleavage you know they're on lines here of a jacket barely visible but they are they're leading into our face and then the face you have another triangle shape so you know that sound that's there's a lot of geometry in this photo and you might miss it if you're not gonna going to look closely but trying to draw on your photo with with a mouse or ISM with a pen and try to find shapes usually triangle so very powerful so look for triangle triangular shapes in your photo anyway last thing I want to say here is it two triangles and they oppose the rectangular shape of the buildings so the buildings remain a bit more calm because you know rectangular czar not so not so aggressive triangles are very aggressive it's a male sort of a symbol writer day the introduced aggression and power and this is a portrait for for a portfolio I mean for a profile web for a website so you need a bit of power at the same time she's smiling and very warm so this you know sort of fuses very well you know she's portraying a confidence and and you know you feel like you can trust the person because she's very warm and smiley but at the same time she looks professional and powerful so you got Authority but approachable which is which is what a successful hotshot is in my opinion about next photo Islam is also in the middle i centered the photo and it looked a bit like cut out from from an interview or like a you know like in movie not a movie like a like a reporter in the TV reporting from some scene you know they usually place them in the middle but um I still left a little bit more space let me just change the color really quick so is going to beat her to see I still laughed a bit more space here which is the way she's facing in the way that the light is coming from so there is a bit more breathing space on this side but because she sort of curved right she's sooner she still twist it and I had it tilted this way and even though her eyes are you know dead in the middle her body seems to be a bit moved to the left which is you know creating an interesting interesting composition in my opinion so this photo it reduces a bit more power because she's you know she's in the center so she looks a bit more powerful in this photo and also the lines of the building and and the darker car if you can see here they introduce a natural vignette which is redirecting the attention in the into the middle which is for exactly what we want none of you know I haven't mentioned this but when I was creating this composite I was trying to place her head in a perfect spot if I'm gonna go back to my original into my composite photo you see I could place her head and actually stretched the background photo to make her fit in here because you know I wanted her darker her hair here which are blond so not really dark but contrast with that brighter brighter side of the building and put this side more in shade so the eyes will not be drawn to this part of the photo because there is less contrast right you can see that more contrast here less contrast here so you are drawn to her face not to decide this side is supposed to be a dead space you know like a negative space or a sword and this sort should be should be where your attention is going so the placement her on the canvas on that photo was also very important we've been here with me here and it's the last one okay so the last photo is a vertical photo and that's also more of a corporate field that that was pretty tricky to to clip because you know I didn't want I didn't want this shoulder to look awkward so I tried a few things and I did chop off the shoulder but it doesn't really bother me I think it looks really cool especially with space being open in here and also this shoulder is further from the camera this one was closer than the camera so I wanted to remove the items closer to the camera and bring attention to her face so I think I've been pushed that way works perfectly if I was placing in the middle now if I moved her a bit he you know if I moved her a bit to the right her eyes would be somewhere here and this would look off because there will be too much over that space on this side you know all this remember all this dark space from this side would would move to the right and her face would be somewhere here so you know it's like one third of the photo would be would be the place to look at and two thirds would be a dead space so that's why I decided to to clip the shoulder and you know introduce a lot of lightness in here and darker tones in here as again like a natural vignette so there you go alas what I want to share is one of my favorite shots that was also cropped up in in Photoshop because if the shot is actually much larger than that I cropped it really close and I wanted you to show that you know even though even though I crop it really really close I still I still left enough of the space under the chin if that was cropped a little bit you know a little bit higher it would look just claustrophobic if I cut this forward a little bit lower a lower Sherlock awaits as well because you know it would be not enough information to frame the eyes and the highs of the you know the main focus that's pretty cool to me you know she'll look good in glasses anyway maybe a rectangular glasses something like this she don't look more futuristic you know anyway just get sidetracked in here think of where is the focus of your photo in this guide in this case the focus aren't the eyes so the ice will be my main subject of my photo and then of course the face but the eyes are the most important ones so make sure that the eyes look natural first second thing make sure that the face looks doesn't look weird it doesn't look there is nothing off when you look at it if you know what I mean like nothing is bothering you it's like I would like to see a bit more of I don't know offer shirt I would like to see a bit more office of a forehead if you think that when you're editing a photo or cropping it probably it's the case so the best way to learn you know composition and cropping is just to take your photos and keep playing with them keep trying different types of crops looks look what other people are doing other photographers professionals there's a lot of great portraits on 500px for example and you know you can look for some fantastic work there look for pictures of professional headshot photographers look at pictures of architecture because architecture is nothing but portrait photography you are portraying a face of a building so if it's a profile or a face of a building or you should interpret downwards it doesn't matter or if it's a cityscape it's a face it's a portrait and you're working with shadows and highlights you work with sharp subjects and negative spaces and it's just the same process so start with architecture and landscape because those things don't move and learn on your photos that you took bring them to photoshop and try different cropping and this would this should you know give enough of enough of material to to improve your compositional skills and then when you go out in the field and you know you have to shoot the portrait you're gonna feel much more comfortable because the composition will be much more natural to you'll know how far you can crop someone face in and make them still look you know look really good anyway guys thanks so much for watching if you enjoyed this video click on like and subscribe already appreciate that very soon we'll be creating another video for the for my series of Photoshop tutorials for beginners and I will be talking about how to use Adobe Camera Raw I will show you not just how to use it but I will focus on my my process of thinking when I'm editing a photo how am i shifting tones in the photo in adobe camera to make my life easier in Photoshop and I'm already know deciding on a composition and you know distribution of tones and colors already in camera so this could be quite an interesting video for you if you if you into you know editing your photos and want to improve your Photoshop techniques thanks again and I'll talk to you in my next movie