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Posted by Matthew Myles on March 21, 2016

3 Tips for Using Minimalism in Photography

A few quick tips to help you incorporate minimalism into your photography.

In photography, minimalism is defined as the usage of negative space such that the subject(s) of the photo are isolated and defined within the composition.  Simply put, minimalism utilizes simple, uncomplicated backgrounds and designs to assist content in sending surprisingly powerful messages.



#1.  Finding the Best Background


Perhaps the most difficult part of the process, finding the right background for your photo is the foundation for a minimalistic style.  Look for areas with minimal amounts of clutter or distractions.  Likely candidates would be a solid colored wall, a desk, or even the ground or sky.  There are no strict rules as to how your background should be selected, as long as you keep a simple composition, the end result should be effective in highlighting your subject.



#2. Find an Area With Good Lighting

While good lighting is always a key part of photography, it is nearly essential to create a high quality minimalistic photo.  Typically, when placing an object or person in front of a solid background, eliminating shadows is necessary to keep a consistent color and lighting scale across the composition.  Windows are a great source of light, so searching for a background near one is a great starting point.  If you find yourself outside in bright sunlight, search for a place with shade to help get rid of strong shadows.


#3.  Find a Set Up that Compliments Your Subject

The main goal of minimalism is to draw attention to the subject in a very subtle but powerful manner.  Details such as color schemes play a large role in how audiences perceive your content.  Coordinating things as simple as lines can make a significant difference in the aesthetic quality of your content.  Think about what your photo is attempting to achieve and choose your subject and background accordingly.



Conclusion:  Keep Your Options and Eyes Open

The amount of patience it may take to achieve a worthwhile shot gives you plenty of time to try new things.  Experiment with weird backgrounds and set ups to find something that’s more your style.  The number one rule of creativity is always that there is more than one way to do any and everything, so keep shooting!

Matthew Myles

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