Composition and Camera Movement

What is Composition?:

Composition is what you would explain to be the placement of relative subjects and elements in art, and this can be any form of it. It is considered key to a good piece of art.

Rules of Composition:

Here I will be explaining the important rules of composition with my own pictures as demonstration.

  • Rule of Thirds: This is a 3×3 grid that has 4 focal points where the lines intersect, this is used to determine where the focus of the shot should be framed, as you’d want it to be more interesting to the viewer.
  • Rule of Odds: This is having an odd number of subjects to be visible in the shot, as the human brain finds this more intriguing, as we normally expect an even amount.

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  • Rule of Balance: This is when all subjects in the shot are all equal, so they both receive the same amount of attention.

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  • Depth: This is having one focal point in the foreground or background, and then having objects or scenery that are away from the focal point in shot, but with less detail, giving the illusion of depth in the image.

  • Framing: This is where you try framing the subject to focus the viewer’s eyes onto it and not the area around it, this can include gaps in fences or even door frames.

  • Leading Lines: This is a way to show the viewer where they should be looking using the scenery, roads and tracks are very good for this.


We must consider all these techniques to present an interesting composition that draws the viewer in.

Camera Motion (ways we can move the camera while filming):

  • Pan: This is to rotate the camera left and right, while having it adjusted at the same height, usually with a tripod.
  • Tilt: Like pan, this is where you tilt the camera up and down while adjusted at the same height when filming
  • Dolly: This is a track that allows the camera (when fixed onto it) to be moved forward and backwards.
  • Track: This is the same as the dolly but instead moving left and right.

We must consider the usage of these techniques to help create certain moods, for example, using the tilt technique to reveal a new character, revealing their face at the end to create suspense that builds up to the moment we can see them.

On set:

In today’s lesson we went around the college campus and taught how to use the camera correctly along with making good use of these techniques to later use to track, clean up and rotoscope.

What we took:

  • 1 Tilt
  • 2 Pans
  • 2 shots for cleanup
  • 2 shots for rotoscoping
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