Converging lines are a favorite among many photographers when composing a photograph.
Lines can often add to a scene’s interest and multiple lines when converging together or appearing close to each other are an ideal way to lead viewers’ eyes into your photo.
A good example of this photography composition trick is looking at railway tracks. If you stand in between a set of tracks you’ll notice they appear to join together the further they are in the distance. A photo of this scene will lead a viewer to follow the lines into the distance.
However, it doesn’t always have to be railway tracks. You can use this same technique with items such as pathways, stairs, roads, power lines, and fences etc.
In fact, just about any type of lines that run parallel with each other into the distance can work.
If you’d like to experiment with converging lines these are a few tips which may help you out.
Photo by Blue Square Thing
Photos by Martin Cathrae and
You could compose railway tracks by placing them in the center and symmetrically in the frame.
You can also move to the side of the train tracks and shoot them diagonally in the frame from a lower corner up to the opposite corner in the top of the composition. This results in a dynamic image.
When the lines are positioned vertical and symmetrical they become dramatic. However, they can also create a sense of movement when they’re diagonal.
Experiment with wide-angle lenses
Photo by Mark Notari
The effect of converging lines can be altered by using different types of lenses.
Wide-angle lenses are fun to experiment with especially if you’re standing between two lines. This will give the impression that the lines are wider than they actually are at the starting position of the photo.
Add interest at the point of convergence
Photo by Blue Square Thing
Remember, when shooting converging lines, they will attract the viewer’s eye towards the point where they converge in the photo composition.
This then generally becomes the focal point of the image.
It’s a good idea to figure out the most effective position to place this in the frame. You may want to use the rule of thirds in photography composition when doing this.
Also, don’t forget if the lines converge outside of your frame then the viewer’s eye will follow them outside of the shot. This can sometimes create a sense of mystery.
On some occasions you may want to spruce up the point where the lines converge with something else interesting. For instance, this could be done if there’s a train on the tracks in the distance or if there’s a person, item or animal at the point of convergence.
We hope you enjoyed these tips on how to use converging lines in your photography compositions. Now that you’re finished reading, leave a comment below telling us which tip was your favorite and share any experiences you’ve had taking these types of photos.
Then, check out our related posts to learn even more ways to improve your photography.