An ordinary composition of a photograph will contain one or more subjects as focal points and a surrounding consisting of other objects. The subjects and the environment around them are the tools with which the observer will build his assumptions about where the photo was taken, what happened then, and what message it tries to convey, if any.

All this is good, but what if another impact on the observer is desired? What if you want to leave little hints, in order to keep him guessing?

Boring surroundings may have a very bad effects on your subject, because, most probably, they will not have elements to balance the photographs, leaving a lot of empty spaces. An effective remedy to this is to fill the frame with your subject, so as to get rid of these empty spaces.

Sometimes it is even better to include nothing but your subject. Take zoo photography as an example. With a normal composition, you will probably include the animal, the cage, and maybe some spectators. Getting rid of all the element except for the animal itself, may make the photograph look as if it was taken in the wild.

Another common use of close-ups is to make the observer use his imagination to come up with different stories from a single photograph . A photo of legs of a man and a woman standing in front of each other can tell many things. The focus here is on the action being performed, rather than who is performing it.

Portraits are usually a strong candidate for closeups. Sure you can take a great portrait with your subject in an interesting 
environment, but you can also get a very nice one too with just focusing on him. Filling the frame with your subject will produce a very personal look.

Getting even closer to just include the face – sometimes with eye contact – can bring a feeling of amicability, as if you were staying face to face with the subject. Close-ups on other body parts produce great photos too; they may create an abstract feel, or emphasize a certain action.

Close-ups also suit still life photographs very well. Getting close to object show new details that are not obvious when photographing from a distance. This is particularly important when photographing products and machine parts.

Zooming and cropping are the tools used to create close-ups. Cropping allows you to cut any part you want from any photograph, making it flexible to carefully choose your composition, but you have to know that the image size will be smaller than the original.

The simplest compositions may sometimes be the richest. So use your imagination, and make your audience use theirs.

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