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On using lines as compositional elements in photography
Ordinarily, we do not think of lines as a worthy subject to photograph. But for a serious photographer, lines as a subject as well as a compositional element can provide great images.

For a photographer, a line is a regular pattern that joins together a number of elements of the image and it doesn't have to be straight line alone. It is regarded that more appealing images often include lines that are curved.

The inset picture taken by Akanksha Joshi shows the terrace paddy fields in the hills and a curved cannal as an example of lines as a compositnal element in photography. In photography, the power of the line comes in its ability to hold the eye and direct it to the part of the image that is of the greatest value. A curve getting into the image is always stronger than the one that comes out of the image.

A good photographer thinks that lines have a few uses in a photograph. For example, lines in a scene can divide, unify, or emphasize certain parts of a composition as well as being the visual subjects in themselves worthy of taking a picture.

Here are a few situations which can be photographed to get a hang of line photography like spider's web, shadows of railings, shafts of light from a cloud, lines in sand dunes, railway lines, rows of electric poles, lines of a net, country roads, curved rivers, fences, slopes of hills, wriggling snake, garden benches, terrace cultivation etc.

To produce dramatic effect in a composition, one can at times blur the lines or go for pro-line photography in a studio. Parallel lines that appear to converge at one-point provide linear perspective to show distance and depth in a photograph.

Similarly, leading lines are most effective when there is some relation between the line and the subject, such as steps leading to a door. The impact of lines can be further enhanced with a wide-angle lens and finding a vantage point close to the beginning of the lines. For instance, kneeling to get close to train tracks provide a better perspective.

Photographers also find that the direction of lines can be forceful mood setters. Straight lines, whether vertical or horizontal, seem stable and formal. The curved lines have sensuousness and winding or spiral or wavy lines are alluring. In line photography, a generally accepted practice is to use the camera in portrait format for predominantly vertical lines and landscape format for pictures having predominantly horizontal lines.

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