Portraits And The Rule of Thirds

In portraiture, rather than centering your subjects, imagine a tic-tac-toe board and place them where the imaginary lines intersect.





Monochrome, San Francisco, Portrait, Nikon, Black and White





Portrait, Child, Beach, Ocean

Hug the Ocean




Thailand, Portrait, Nikon, Travel

Going Fishing




“There is no better time to crop a bad composition than just before you press the shutter release.”

~ Bryan Peterson





Thailand, Travel, Mahout, Portrait





Portrait, , Nikon, Child







“I work from awkwardness. By that I mean I don’t like to arrange things. If I stand in front of something, instead of arranging it, I arrange myself.”

~ Diane Arbus





Cat, Portrait, Nikon, Black and White

Here Kitty






Thailand, Portrait, Man, Nikon

At Rest, Chiang Mai




Portrait, Child, Nikon, Black and White, Monochrome






“For me, the camera is a sketch book, an instrument of intuition and spontaneity.”

~ Henri Cartier-Bresson





The Weekly Photo Challenge is “Rule of Thirds”. 


Categories: Children, Photography, Portraits, Street Photography, TravelTags: , , , , , , , , , , ,


  1. I have always loved your ability to “catch” just the right look, the right face, the right expression! Love all of these


  2. The serious look on the cat’s face is the best! What a portrait!


  3. Beautiful concept


  4. Wow these are awesome. my fave is “going fishing” and “Andrew.” Nice eye.


  5. Wow Jane. These portraits are all remarkable- expressive, powerful, beautiful and provocative. Works of art that capture the essence of the subject. Truly impressive.


  6. So many really great portraits! It might be true what they say (in acting) about children and animals stealing the show. I love the “Hug the Ocean” photo. I like the brief photo lesson on how to shoot portraits using the rule of thirds, and I love the quotes.


  7. Great series of shots, and love the Bryan Peterson quote…so much truth to that.


  8. I am not comfortable asking strangers if I can take a photo. I am more of a surreptitious street photographer. But the other day we were standing in line waiting for some attraction behind a very tall, ancient looking hippie with full gray beard and long sandy colored gray hair. A tourist who barely spoke English came up to him and said, “photograph?” and the hippy just beamed and nodded. What a great moment. Your first photo reminds me of that. And one of these days maybe I’ll get up the courage to do the same. I especially like “Discovering”.


  9. I bet the guy in the 1st image is the nicest guy but just showing a tough exterior. I also really like the last image. I do have to say all are great photographs.


  10. All wonderful portraits !


  11. Beautiful pictures, and I actually learned something about centering objects for a photo. Thanks.


  12. Wonderful examples! I prefer to call it the ‘formula of thirds’ since I believe there are no ‘rules’ I art. I mostly use my sense of ‘what feels right’ for any given subject when composing.


  13. Great portraits, love them 🙂


  14. Hi Jane , processing of cat photo is great, I liked it .
    A Greeting


  15. Very effective. I read just a bit about the different “power areas” in pictures years ago, but as I look at these, not only does it place the subject in a visually power place, but also allows for the context of the subject to enter into the picture, fleshing out the image.


  16. The Kitty is terrific! She is a 1940’s film star reborn. (Seriously–we’re talking Bette Davis attitude on this cat.)


  17. What a beautiful series, Jane. I love the diversity of humanity here.


  18. these r just wonderful///loving andrew’s eyes….a really great eye!!!


  19. Lovely photos with subjects expertly composed within the frame!


  20. Some wonderful and well-captured memories here Jane. Loved the tats photo too – was he posing for you?


  21. Wonderful photos and interpretation of the theme.


  22. I’m thinking how each subject would love to have that photo of themselves. Beautiful, Jane!


  23. These are great examples of the tic-tac-toe lines Jane. And Kevin’s arms alone take up a third all on their own. Well done my friend 🙂


  24. You have captured the personality in each of these portraits Jane


  25. I really like your black and white images, especially the child on the stairs.


  26. Love the portraits of children… the look of wonder always captures the heart ❤


  27. Great shot of the cat on the steps!


  28. Excellent. Loved each one of these.


  29. LOVE these!!!!!!!!

    Love, Helen

    Sent from my iPhone



  30. Beautiful series !


  31. Great Job again! and portrait is a really difficult thing!
    Your models are cool in front of you.. It’s an art!!!


  32. An excellent collection!


  33. Such expressive portraits.



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