Landscape vs Portrait or Horizontal vs Vertical

Every scene and situation is different so it is always best to look through your camera’s viewfinder to know which orientation looks best.  You can also capture both – horizontally and vertically.  Yes, take both and see firsthand what works best for you. It is always best to practice composition techniques so you can learn firsthand what elements work and which don’t. You can also view other photographer’s images and learn.

Below are four photo examples. There are two images, each of the same scene. One image has been taken in the landscape (horizontal) format and the second image has been taken in the portrait (vertical) format. Take time to study each scene. Which photo has a stronger composition?  Why?

Landscape (Horizontal)?

Portrait (Vertical)?

Landscape (Horizontal)?

Portrait (Vertical)?

Landscape (Horizontal)?

Portrait (Vertical)?

Landscape (Horizontal)?

Portrait (Vertical)?

Landscape (Horizontal)?

Portrait (Vertical)?

For some images, both Horizontal and Vertical work beautifully for a strong composition.  In other images, one aspect will make your composition stronger than another.  The perspective of the scene does change dramatically when the camera is held vertically.  Do you notice this?

There is nothing wrong with taking a photo both horizontally and vertically.  Sometimes seeing will help you decide which is best for the strongest composition.

A free PDF Download is Available showing examples of horizontal vs vertical in photo composition.

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