Cutting it too tight

I had a discussion a few weeks ago with a fellow photographer about how tight in do I take my shots and do I crop images.

Well the simple answer was, I like to leave room around a subject to give me options on composition later on, I used to do the same when shooting film, and yes I do crop images if need be, quite a lot some times beyond the 50% mark.

What really got me thinking about this is the number of images I have seen on FaceBook lately where the subject is filling the whole frame or parts have been cut off and when asked if there is any more in the original file, the reply is far to often “no that is the whole image”. I sometimes wonder if some people do not really pay attention to what they are seeing in the view finder. 

One other reason for leaving room in the image is if there is an annoying distraction on the edge of the frame that would draw the eye it is so easy just to crop a bit off and not have to worry about getting to close to the subject in the image.

A few examples:

full img

Full image of a Silver-Studded Blue with plenty of room for cropping.

my crop

How I would crop the image to remove most of the distracting stem on the left but still leaving room around the subject to show the enviroment it is in.

stag full

Even I get it wrong some times, antlers chopped off. Opps.


So leave plenty of room for possible composition changes at a late stage.

© Ian Hutchinson 2017     Get in touch