Exposure triangle (including leading lines, symmetry and rule of thirds)



The exposure triangle consists of three different settings:-

.Shutter Speed



These settings are slightly different in film, compared to photography. But for the most part they work the same way. All three of these settings work in co-ordination with each other. And to be able to successfully use one, you must also change the other settings to make it work right.


The Shutter Speed refers to the camera’s shutter and how long it is open for, when you are taking a photograph or filming. We mainly use shutter speed in order to capture and see what the naked eye cannot. This is because we film or photograph on a fast shutter speed. This means that the shutter opens and closes very quickly, and as a result you will get an image that is almost ‘frozen’. Obviously, you can do the opposite and use a slow shutter speed, which will give you an image that has been ‘dragged around’. Depending on how long the shutter is open, the photograph for instance could be very dark (under exposed) or very bright (over exposed). The slower the shutter speed, the more light will be exposed. But you cant just simply change the shutter speed to make it right, (even though that would affect weather your photograph or film will be frozen or not) as one thing can cause another, for instance; motion blur. You will probably need to change the Aperture and ISO as well, so they can work in harmony with each other.

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Shutter Speed

The Aperture is determined based on how wide or thin the shutter is open. The way to remember is that; the higher the f.stop, (which is one of several names given to aperture) the deeper the depth of field. If you have a deep depth of field, then the focus will stretch a long distance (hence deep). So if you used a shallow depth of field, the foreground would be in focus, but the background would not. If the shutter is wide open you are also likely to let more light in however.

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‘The important thing to remember is this: the higher the f number, the more things in front of and behind the subject will be in focus, but the more light you will need. The lower the f number, the more things in front of and behind the subject will be out of focus, and the less light you will need’ – (unknown) Camerasim.com

The ISO setting is predominantly about grain (commonly refereed to as noise). Depending on what ISO setting you use, the grain could be highly noticeable, or it could not be present in the image at all. If you are looking to get grain in the image, then you would want to be using a high ISO setting. But again, lighting is very important to getting the right photograph or film. If you want grain, then as I just mentioned, you could use a high ISO setting, but because of that, the image may come out fairly dark. Lots of light is needed for a clean and crisp image. The lower the ISO setting, the cleaner the image.


As well as the exposure triangle, we spoke about three different features which are commonly used and are generally seen as rules, when filming and photographing. These three were:-

.Rule of thirds


.Leading lines

Rule of thirds

The rule of thirds is very important for both film and photography. It is used partially to satisfy the audiences and the people viewing the image. This is because their eyes are naturally drawn to certain places in an image. The rule of thirds is a grid box of three by three. You try to line up certain parts of the image on certain lines. So for instance, if a woman was standing near the bottom of the image, then you would try and place her eyes in line with the lowest horizontal line. We also use them to make sure that their are no ‘gaps’ in the image. By this I mean, filling in areas of the frame. If a picture is taken of a mountain side, but it only covers half of the frame, then that is an example of the rule of thirds not being put to use. As I was saying about satisfying the audiences, they want something to look at, and if their is a gap on almost half of the image, then their eyes won’t be naturally drawn to something, because their is a huge gap in the image, which is preoccupying their minds. So it is giving them something to look at. So the rule of thirds is about filling up the four corners in the middle of the nine lines.


Obviously, this is a little different as, it is an extra close up and the frame is filled. But you can see here, what I was saying about lining the eyes up with the horizontal lines.

If you were filming an image, you wouldn’t typically frame someone in the centre of the room, and look directly at them. This is an example of a typical frame set-up for an interview. But the line of thirds are not used to their best ability here, as the eyes are not lined up. But the background to the left is occupied with a light in the corner.

Leading lines

Leading lines do what they say on the tin. They are lines in a frame, that purposefully lead us in a certain direction. Their is a good variety in the way that they could be used. Your eyes could follow a pipe from the foreground to the background as it gets smaller. Or it could be a road that bends in several different directions.


Symmetry is also used as a technique. All that it means is that the picture is the same (or almost the same) on both sides, as if it had been split down the middle.

Now these two are not exactly symmetrical, but they sprung to mind in terms of symmetry that I knew had been used in films or shows that I know. Symmetry I noticed has been a common theme with Walter White from ‘Breaking Bad’.





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