Recently I took a small group of students to Venice, FL as the backdrop to explore and practice the concept of using lines in our photography to create more compelling images. Lines are found all around us in both our natural world as well as our man made world. Lines really help solidify a viewers connection with the photograph and draw you into the image almost immediately as our eyes naturally want to follow lines, the same way people from the UK naturally want to form a line (queue).
Lines can be parallel, opposing, radiating, random, rhythmic or guiding. You use lines to take the viewer through the path of your frame. Remember that one of the most difficult tasks in photography is to simplify your composition. Photographers of all levels often try to simply include too much in their images as it is much easier than breaking down a concept to its most basic level.
The very best images most always represent very simple design ideals and subjects. Looking for a line can help you weed out everything in your photo that isn’t truly necessary and reinforce what your subject is by leading them right to it or making your image more dynamic.
Test this concept by taking two images of the same subject, one having very definite defined lines and the other not. Ask for feedback to see which your viewers prefer and you’ll see that the images wth defined lines most always prevail.