Tip 10: A fairly recent phrase doing the rounds on photographic composition is that of ‘negative space’. Put simply, this means composing with a lot of ‘nothing’ in your composition; nothing usually being sky, sea or empty field perhaps. The idea is to use one key/main subject and to have the rest of the shot totally uncluttered, to allow that one key subject to breathe. The bottom line, to me, is that you are really able to hit home the subject, as it is utterly free of distractions, whilst putting that key element into its place, fairly and squarely.
Try it? Done carefully it can look very effective indeed, in either colour or monochrome.

In the shot below, taken in the Isles of Scilly, I deliberately chose the yacht to the exclusion of all else. My negative space, here, is the enormous and utterly featureless sky. Where does your eye go first? Does the negative space set the context of the shot?

Yacht at Sea – Isles of Scilly

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