Geometric Photography Guide

black and white photo of bridge and support wires

Geometric photography is the capturing of a photo using geometric shapes, and the photographic subject being the shape.

The art of geometric photography can be done with a digital camera, mobile phone or tablet, Photoshop software or any other editing app.

Geometric photos are easy to create once you know what to do and have the right tools at hand. All you need is some patience and a keen eye for detail. We will go through step-by-step instructions on how to take some of your own geometric photographs.

What Gear To Use

All you need is a camera, lens, a tripod and a good subject.

A good camera with high ISO capability is a must, but make sure you also have a good quality lens and tripod.

While you can still get away with using your cellphone camera to take geometric photos, it will be best to use your digital SLR or mirrorless camera (with interchangeable lenses), as these tend to have higher resolutions than cellphones and other smart devices.

It is also advisable to use a tripod to ensure the sharpness of your photos.

What Camera Settings To Use

The shutter speed of your camera should be adjusted to 1/50th of a second or faster.

This sets the correct depth of field, giving you that ‘snapshot’ effect.

You’ll also want to use a lens with a maximum aperture of f/2.0 or higher, giving you greater control in your photos.

What Are Good Subjects For Geometric Photography?

Geometric photography is done by putting geometric shapes in perspective.

You can use anything you have around you, from simple objects to more complex shapes.

You can use anything to take geometric photos, from random objects around your house to the cool architecture of modern buildings. Architectural photography is one of the most striking forms of geometric photography and is one of my personal favorites.

What Shapes To Incorporate

Typical geometric portraits start with a variety of geometric shapes near your subject.
These can be simple: such as a cube or sphere, or very complex: like the pyramids and other architectural forms around the world. The simpler the shapes you use, the easier it will be to create a photo with nice depth of field and strong lines.

It is better to use simple geometric shapes in your photos, because the most complex shapes will appear to be rather messy.

Composition Tips

One thing you can do is use multiple geometric shapes of similar size in the same composition.

For instance, you can use both a cube and a sphere or multiple cubes in one photo.
I would recommend not using more than two or three main geometric shapes per image.

Step-by-Step Instructions On Taking Your First Geometric Photo

  1. Choose the subject you wish to photograph.
  2. Select a background for your photo.
  3. Photograph the subject from two or three different points of view and use these shots as your composite image (in Photoshop).
  4. Add random geometric shapes to the image and use your favorite photo editing software to remove the background.
  5. Print out the composite image and look at it one last time to see if you like it.

Bottom Line

Geometry has been used in photography since the very earliest days of film photography. In the days of large film negatives, it was important to use straight lines to give framing and depth to your images.

It is an art form that can be learned and perfected through practice and patience. Looking at photos that are made in a similar way is a good starting point.