The rule of thirds has been lapped up by budding photographers for decades. What if it was invented by Pablo Picasso and other fine art masters to destroy everyone else’s artistic potential?
This humorous video by Tavis Leaf Glover puts an amusing spin on the somewhat tired rule of thirds that has dominated photography education for years.
A few things to take with you into this video: In 1797, English painter and engraver John Thomas Smith published a treatise entitled Remarks on Rural Scenery. The book outlines some of his formalized approaches to composition and features the earliest known reference to the rule of thirds. It also mentions that parts of every image should be as light and as dark as possible.
If you’ve been anywhere near the internet in the last five years, you will recognize the interview used widely as a meme. The piece aired on Spanish television in 2001 and featured Spanish comedian and actor Juan Joya Borja, better known as El Risitas — literally, “he giggles.” In the interview, Borja recalls an incident working as a kitchen porter when some paella pans were left in the sea to soak and ended up being taken out by the tide.
Is it time to remove the rule of thirds from our photography textbooks? Let us know in the comments below.