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Chapter 6. Improving Image Quality While... > Keeping your composition simple - Pg. 103

Improving Image Quality While Shooting 103 Bracketing your shots manually If your camera doesn't have automatic exposure bracketing but has adjustable exposure compen- sation, you can manually set up your own bracket. The technique here is to take one shot, allowing the camera to meter the scene. Then, take one shot at positive exposure compensation and one shot at negative exposure compensation. You get the same results--the automatic exposure brack- eting just speeds the process along. While having your camera do all the work is easier, the benefit of manually bracketing your shot is that you aren't limited to the range of exposure you can shoot with. Bracketed shots in post-process Bracketing shots can also be helpful if you want to combine two images to get the best composite image. Let's go back to the subject in the snow--by taking a series of shots at different exposures, you can select a foreground subject that has the correct exposure from one shot with the background that contains good detail from another shot. Then, by combining these two elements, you can build a better composite shot. Often, this is the only way to make certain shots work, so keep it in mind when you shoot. Keeping your composition simple One of the easiest and most efficient ways to improve your photography is to apply a few rules of photographic composition. The first, and easiest to understand, is the rule of simplicity. Too many elements in an image will draw the viewer's eyes all over a photograph, while centering in on one or two main elements will create a clear, direct visual message. By isolating the subject, through color or position of the camera, your image will become stronger and you'll be more pleased with your shots.