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A Lesson in Leading Lines

By Chris Corradino on December 03, 2014


This is a classic example of the compositional technique known as "leading lines."

“Leading lines” elongate the viewer’s perspective; take a look at your surroundings and you'll likely notice lines everywhere.

Some common examples include:

  • Train tracks
  • Curved roads
  • Fences
  • Bridges
  • Tunnels

It doesn't have to stop there though. With practice, you’ll be able to incorporate leading lines into more of your work as you continue to develop your eye. For a dramatic effect, arrange your composition so the lines start at the bottom of the frame, and travel up towards the top of the image. Consider it a path for viewers to visually walk through your photograph.

At NYIP, we encourage our students to learn the rules of composition, and then break them. Good art doesn’t necessarily come from a textbook. It is a blend of technique and creative vision.

Want more? The New York Institute of Photography was recently recognized as a top digital photography school in 2014 by the Best Colleges Online Organization. Let us help you become a better photographer today.

About the Author

Chris Corradino is the head of the photography mentor program at NYIP. Just like all of our mentors, he is also a professional photographer. See Chris's lesson from last week for more.