PHOTOGRAPHY: THE IMPORTANCE OF WHITE SPACE

I think one of the biggest things I’ve learned about photography in the past few months is that sometimes less is more. Sometimes the best photos are the simplest and the most minimal. Take a look at Tamira’s photography and you’ll see what I mean. It’s simple and clean and it’s breathtaking. This isn’t to say that busy photos never look good; I just find that it’s much harder to compose them in an appealing manor. In my mind it’s like a band – there are all these instruments going and if they’re not all perfectly in synch (no, not Nsync thank god) it erodes into noise. So my suggestion is to consider taking a step back, pairing things down and giving everything space to breathe. I’ll try to show you what I mean.

While there’s nothing technically wrong with this photo, I don’t find it to be particularly pleasing to look at. Between the cramped products and the pouch underneath, there’s a lot for the eye to take in. Too much information can be overwhelming and actually detract from the overall appearance.

While this might not be the most exciting example of photography, hopefully it demonstrates a point. The amount of space between the products and the simple background give your eye a chance to breathe. Additionally, there’s quite a large chunk of space left untouched. Having areas that your eye can go to rest makes you appreciate the areas of focus even more. 

Of course all of this is a matter of personal preference, but I think that generally blogs that are known for their beautiful photography (gh0stparties, icovetthee, lipstickwithsomesunshine, for example) use white space very well. It can be tempting to overload your picture, but sometimes having the confidence to do less is for the best.

  • Completely agree. Love a lot of white space everywhere, in the blog design, photos and even in the text. And white backgrounds are divine. Thank god for that white wooden background we made, love it!

    Hope you got my email reply! πŸ™‚

    xo
    – Chaitra | PinkPot

  • Your photos are always amazing, such a great tip!

    Alice x
    Sheer Beautiful l Bloglovin'

  • Haha. Yes, thank you for that tutorial! P.s. going to email you back soon. There was so much good stuff in your email I need to get my head around it.

  • I agree though what do you use for your white background, and how do you get such great lighting?

    http://www.withinjayslife.blogspot.ca

  • Ha yyeaaaahh. About that…I use studio lights because I live in a basement suite. But there are pretty expensive lighting kits these days. And I have a white desk.

  • I love photographs with just the right amount of white space- it just makes things stand out so beautifully and prevent clutter. I've been taking it into account when I'm taking my own blog photos as well!
    p.s. Your photos are SUCH eye candies

    Yet Another Makeup Blog.

  • Sometimes I add objects to pictures just to add interest to the photo but some of my favourites are just plain backgrounds! Interesting post

    styleaked – Rayban giveaway

  • You are such an inspiration!
    xx

    youdiyou.blgospot.com

  • This method really does create some beautiful photographs with the products being the real focus in the image. I need to get something marble printed to work with, as it's just a stunning texture.

    nueyork.blogspot.com

  • Agreed! I remember I used to cram my photos and only recently started playing around with white space. Rather than just all white background, I like adding textures just to make it more interesting too. It's frustrating though when you're just uninspired and have no idea how to organise the objects in a photo in a visually appealing way, haha.
    http://berrixbeauty.blogspot.com

  • White space is amaaazing, definitely adds a lot of contrast. I think my photos could definitely use a bit more space – but often I have issues because my piece of paper isn't big enough – LOL.

    Tasha // shiwashiful.

  • I absolutely love white space in photographs- nearly as much as I adore them in my apartment πŸ˜‰ Must be the Scandinavian in me ! Less is more and it certainly is the case when it comes to photographing beauty products especially. Sometimes I feel as though I need to amp it up a bit when I notice that 4 posts in a row have all had a clean white background, but thats when I throw in some Dyptique candles in the far background or something in that style! Great post, like always! XX

    Gabriella | Willow Jolie – http://www.willowjolie.com

  • I'm 50/50 on white space in photography, on one hand it does bring direct attention to the items you are showcasing, on the other hand though I think it can end up looking a bit blank and if it is too far away and you can end up losing the details of a product. What I really prefer is the item(s) in focus and stuff in the background that is out of focus especially if there is a candle or Christmas lights giving some bokeh (something I need to work on myself) and bonus points for using the rule of thirds
    Allison from http://www.mercuteify.com

  • This post was so helpful and inspiring! I'm always trying to learn more about photography (and have felt like my photos have been a bit busy lately), so this post was like a breath of fresh air. I'm taking your advice and am going to start experimenting more with white space. Thank you so much for this post!

    xo Mandy
    http://www.agirlobsessedblog.com

  • I'm a big fan of having white space in my photos, I feel like it makes everything look a little more neat and clean x

    SophiesMakeupBlog

  • Thank you for the tip. One of my news year's resolutions is to learn about photography and how to use my new camera properly. I will definitely be taking this into account πŸ™‚

    Theatricality by Mariah

  • Tamira's photos are so gorgeous! I always like how you leave quite a bit of space – like the photos will be quite zoomed out and products not too close up & in yer face x

    ellabooxo β€’ beauty & lifestyle

  • I could not agree more, you know I love me some good white space haha πŸ˜‰ xx

  • Ah, you're photos are so good Sophie! You always have the perfect amount of white space… and light… and composition. I could go on.

  • Haha! I totally know that problem. Sometimes I see photos that people take and I can't figure out how they have a background that big.

  • Oh yes. That Joggers post you did was a mighty fine example of beautiful white space.

  • I love that Scandinavian look. My home Pinterest board is covered in that style. Simple and clean never goes out of style.

  • Yeah, it's nice to have textures to mix it up. I try to do a bit of both.

  • Man, marble contact paper is where it's at. So cheap and you have so much to work with.

  • Thank you!

  • Thank you! And I just realized I never said thank you on that post you did. I read it and thought it but I never actually wrote it! Thank you.

  • Awesome possum πŸ™‚

  • I'll have another post out for you soon then πŸ™‚

  • Thanks man. I am obsessed with Tamira though. Seriously, every time I look at her photos I'm just like "dang it, why is that not me doing that?!"

  • White space is so important! I try to incorporate as much as I can x

    Charlotte – http://charlottesophiaroberts.blogspot.co.uk

  • Same for you though. Srsly grl.

  • This is a very interesting post. I'm still learning and experimenting with photography, I'm a total newbie. But somehow I'm drawn to clean pictures, and the three ladies you mention are amongst my favourites when it comes to that.

  • Wow amazing blogpost and so on point! I found it really interesting to hear your take, very inspiring! πŸ™‚ xx

    Helen | Helens Fashion & Beauty Blog

  • Ah I love white backgrounds, I'm learning currently but I see your point x

    https://latteincoventgarden.wordpress.com/

  • I love, love, LOVE white but for me, I prefer pops of color in between. πŸ™‚

    xx

  • I'm still working on how to integrate pops of colour. I find it hard not to make it look too kiddish when I do it. How does Kate from Ghost Parties do it?!

  • They're so good! I constantly find myself flicking through their pictures.

  • I really need to do something about white space for my photos!
    Love, Rebecca-Louise
    Autumn Leaves – Blogging Tips & Beauty Blog

  • ha ha no hurry! hope u r having a great weekend! xo

  • Agree! I've been to a few viewings of apartments in MalmΓΆ ( where I live in Sweden) and at first I couldn't believe that 9/10 apartments looked like they were taken straight from Pinterest but now I've gotten used to everyones homes having that style. Quality over quantity is what goes for all Scandinavians and since moving there I've adapted the same mentality πŸ™‚ If you like Scandinavian interiors check out the shop room21 and HAY ( Room21 only ships to scandinavia though but nice place for inspiration! πŸ™‚
    xxx Gabriella

  • Great post! I've been looking for photography info & posts on the best methods to improve my own blog so this was a refreshing read.
    http://www.herdragonflytales.com

  • I love I covet thee, definitely going to be using more white space!


    L'oreal Paris Infallible 24H-Matte Review