Negative Space. This is kind of a new term in photography but has become really popular lately. I am glad it showed up on the “list of 51” that this should be a true photographic subject. So, here is the true definition of “negative space” :
Negative space, in art, is the space around and between the subject of an image. Negative space may be most evident when the space around a subject, not the subject itself, forms an interesting or artistically relevant shape, and such space occasionally is used to artistic effect as the “real” subject of an image.
As you look at the photo above, you will see mostly space, and lots of space around the subject. Simply put, this is how negative space is used now. It is a very artistic way of doing photography….. and I like it.
The above photo is another wonderful example of negative space. In this case the huge space around the tree is very interesting and adds depth to the photo.
Here is a list of how negative space can be used:
1- You certainly can use negative space to draw attention to the subject:
See something that is alone, or interesting, but, nothing else around it seems interesting, then this is one way to use negative space. Your eye is drawn to the dead grass in the above photo, but, notice how little your eye wanders around the photo. Hardly at all.
2- Use negative space to show movement of the subject into the photo.
With lots of negative space, you can see the owl in the above photo move more into the photo. This is used a lot in winter.
3- Create an air of mystery with negative space:
This photo above has a lot of mystery to it. You can see the subject is on water, but, what is it doing? Where are they? What will happen to them? The mystery of the “negative space” is amazing in this type of photo.
Just to provide mystery or something really unique, try this type of photography, where the subject is almost alone in the surrounds of the photo. It’s pretty impressive.