Cee’s Compose Yourself Challenge – Week 14 Symmetry

This week’s assignment, Cee calls for Symmetry


To start off with I thought I show the dictionary definition of Symmetry.

sym·me·try\ˈsi-mə-trē\                noun

  1. the quality of something that has two sides or halves that are the same or very close in size, shape, and position
  2. the quality of having symmetrical parts
  3. balanced proportion
  4. beauty of form arising from balanced proportions

Synonyms: balance, coherence, proportion, harmony, unity

A love of symmetry is something that is hard-wired into our brains.  We crave balance and harmony.  It’s how we define beautiful people.  Look at any woman the world considers to be beautiful and you will see that the left half of her face looks almost exactly like the right half.

Using symmetry in your photography can lend interest to your pictures by making them more subconsciously beautiful to your viewer’s eye.  It can elevate your subject matter, if done correctly.

I decided to hunt back through some images for this one, I discovered that I shoot asymmetrical. I rarely shoot using symmetry, apart from under piers……..I must confess I really love that look. I have lots of photos from under piers. But I have decided that I must be wired differently as (apart from Bridges and piers) it’s not a look that I particularly like. Personal choice and all that, I find it less interesting than something unexpected in shot or asymmetrical. When it comes to bridges and piers I think it’s probably the leading lines  I enjoy as opposed to the actual symmetry.


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Alowyn Gardens
Alowyn Gardens

In saying all that, there are times where it does work, and I know people use it all the time to great effect, personally I prefer the ruly of thirds. Also (not that I have any shots here) but when shooting with symmetry it tends to work better sometimes with a square crop against a 2/3 shot, or is that just me?

Til next time, happy snapping……..