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What is Negative Space

We've all heard about it, but what is it?  The area of a photo or image that is not composed of by the subject.  Basically, it's anything but the subject.  That 'negative' part though; the space has to be empty.  If it's not empty it won't come close to having the same effect.  Let's take a look at a few examples of negative space so we fully understand what we're dealing with here.  


Film Roll

Negative Space Example

We can see in the above examples, the subjects of the pictures, be they film canisters or small desk accessories, are made to stand out boldly by leaving much of the photo empty.  The eye is drawn to the subject and remains there.  
You can use negative space in your day-to-day photography techniques.  When you're choosing a subject, try to focus on that subject as best you can.  Avoid capturing all that other noise, unless that's the kind of thing you're going for.  
Negative space isn't only for composition either.  Many artists are finding ways to use it in considerably more creative ways. Even a few big brands have been taking advantage of negative space these days.  You just may not have noticed it.  Take the FedEx logo for example; ever notice the negative space between the 'E' and the 'x' form a forwardly arrow?  

Negative Space Architecture

Negative space can be used in a variety of ways.  From highlighting part of an image, to displaying a borderline subliminal message in a logo we interact with regularly.  It's pristine minimalistic feel is not to be underestimated when composing a project.  Definitely a go to favourite for us here at Photo Redesign.  

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