‘Elements & Principles of Art in Photography’
Tony Bramley FRPS, Monday 18th March 24

We were treated to a fascinating and thoughtful talk from Tony Bramley FRPS on Monday evening.
Tony explained how the fundamentals of composition from the world of art can influence photography and how the main building blocks of an image are comprised of Elements and Principles.

Tony said the ‘Elements’ of composition include Line, Colour, Texture, Shape, Form, Value and Space. By using examples from historical works of art and famous photographers, Tony showed how artists over the years have used these elements to produce classic paintings and photographs. He supported this with examples of his own photography.

The ’Principles’ organise the elements and include Proportion, Repetition, Variety, Movement, Balance, Emphasis, and Unity (Harmony). Again, we were shown examples from art and photography to demonstrate how these principles strengthen the composition of a photograph and, particularly, how we provide our own emotional input (the ‘me’ factor) to a photograph.

We were briefly introduced to the concept of ‘Suprematism’, a technique Tony used to produce his FRPS panel and involves taking a single photographic image and deconstructing this using multiple layers to create a very abstract piece of work. This fascinating technique is the subject of another of Tony’s talks which I’m sure would be of interest to many members.

Analysing some of his own photographs, he demonstrated how he applied these elements and principles and how they can be used to enhance our own photography.
Finally, Tony used an excellent photograph from one of our own members, Jill Bramley (no relation!), to demonstrate how these elements and principles work together.

Tony helpfully provided a handout covering the themes of his talk which has been emailed to all members.

It was a very stimulating and thought-provoking talk and, given the time, could have produced a lively debate into the late hours!

- Stephen Lee