Choice of Camera Viewpoint

Look at a scene from different viewpoints to find the most effective perspective and improve composition

Photography initially followed its composition conventions of subject positioning and viewpoint from classical painting and some of these are still employed today, however photography has evolved its own visual language to add to this by conveying other ideas and meanings.


When we talk about viewpoint we are concerned with a position offering a good view or, a point of view; an opinion. It is this that we are looking to take control of. So when shooting, you need to consider how you want your subject to appear, and how you would like the viewer to relate to it.

The choice of vantage point, the position from which you photograph the subject, is something few beginner photographers think about, yet it can have a profound impact on the quality of your images.


If you always shoot at eye level - the most common and familiar view - all your images will be defined by exactly the same vantage point and running the risk of becoming boring.

So, always experiment with different ways to see the same scene creating a less common perspective of otherwise familiar subjects. It is always the more unusual angles which stand out.



The usual and ordinary is often disregarded as having been "seen before" so it is sometimes important to look for fresh angle on a subject that will tell the viewer something new.

Practice always makes better ! To gain further experience, follow our
Photo Assignment: Experiment with Perspective


The first, most obvious difference between high or low vantage point is the background.

If you are photographing a subject that cannot easily be moved, often the only way to overcome a distracting background is to choose a different angle and use the ground or the sky as your empty backdrop.

field_low_viewpoint                colours_of_nature

The subject itself can also look quite different viewed from different angles. Images can be made to take on a whole new dynamic by selecting an extreme angle of view.

concept_car_viewpoint                concept_car_viewpoint

You can especially introduce tension and drama to action shots by choosing an imbalanced vantage point and getting the camera as close to the ground as possible.


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