Whether or not Picasso actually said it, the idea of "learning the rules like a pro so you can break them like an artist" is one that rings true with the pioneering panel of FocalAgent Expert Photographers:
- Rob Buttle, expert on wedding photography
- Neil Isherwood, expert on forensic photography
- Laura Laws, expert on portrait photography
- Hennie Wellman, expert on editorial photography
To them, some rules are just made to be broken and some should always be followed. Read on to find out which; and in the comments, let us know which ones you do - and don't! - break.
Laura Laws: expert on portrait photography
LL: I don't really like to follow 'rules' - my photography is a reflection of what I like to do. In portraiture, posing is usually considered important. But for me, the natural moment makes the best photograph. If it's technically 'wrong' composition-wise, I don't mind - as long as it conveys emotion.
Rob Buttle, expert on wedding photography
RB: Everyone's got their own style, so I'd say that our approach isn't necessarily about 'rules'. The ones I always use, though, are the rule of thirds and the inclusion of leading lines. When I'm doing a wedding shoot, I place couples in the middle of the frame as I like the central point of focus in an image.
Neil Isherwood, expert on forensic photography
NI: Some people say it's cheating to use Photoshop but I don't think it is at all. I shoot in RAW, so things inevitably need to be corrected - but definitely NO cloning or anything like that.
Hennie Wellman, expert on editorial photography
HW: Editorial photography often has an element of idealism to it but I don't like to go down that route. Editorial or not, I want my photography to reflect the world around us, not a sugar coated version.
Do you keep or break the traditional rules of photography? Let us know in the comments section below.