I’ve started categorizing some of my best photos (52 down, hundreds to go) and found that over fifty percent of them applied the rule of thirds. When composing a photo, if there were to be one pattern to rule them all, it’d be the rule of thirds.
Here are some photos which were taken with the pattern in mind.
The application of rule of thirds starts with drawing two vertical lines to divide the frame, horizontally, in to three spaces equally and two horizontal lines to divide the frame vertically in to three spaces equally as well.
Here are again the same set of photos overlaid with rule-of-third guide lines.
The rule of thirds suggests that the subject of the scene to be placed in one of four intersections formed by those lines. Other than on the intersections, placing a horizontal line (such as the horizon) or a vertical line along one of the rule-of-thirds guide lines is also a good application of the rule.
Some cameras have the feature to show those guide lines, but it’s not difficult to imagine those lines as you look through viewfinder (or live view).