Juxtaposition | Photography Basics

Juxtaposition is the art placement of two subjects to create contrast or to compliment each other. It can either be intentional or accidental and more often than not its intentions can be subtle.


 
Photography Basics Memory Gate

 

To see a reoccurring example of juxtaposition just open any newspaper. Headlines and images are designed to compliment each other but sometimes editors add in other non-related images from other stories to a spread which confuse the overall message of the page.

This is the power of clever juxtaposition but of course editors will always plead ignorance.

 
Juxtaposition newspaper
 
Juxtaposition newspaper 2
 

In photography juxtaposition is a common occurrence as many images have more than one subject in the frame. To form an image which can fully utilise the juxtaposition of two elements try and think of them as primary and secondary subjects.

For example here’s an old favourite wedding photography trick that was made popular by sites like Flickr.

The wedding rings are the primary subject and the shadow in a heart shape would be the secondary. Actually this image has a third element which is the book and is usually a bible.

All these elements brought together make the message of the image has all that more stronger.

 
ring on book
 


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