I recently finished teaching two workshops at the Santa Fe Workshops. I emphasize in my classes that everything has to matter in an image.
I am trained as a magazine photographer to get it right in the frame. As a personal challenge I do not crop my images after the fact. I find that if I just take a step or two forward, maybe left or right, I can tighten the frame and eliminate clutter. Or, if I just move the camera ever so slightly I can perfect the composition.
And, often negative space has as much impact as a person or an object. However, you have to delicately balance the weight of the space with the weight of the subject. It is a balancing act and the tension is critical.
It is as simple as having clean space around subjects, like this:
© nevada wier Myanmar. Chindwin River. Fog.
or space with texture and color
© nevada wier India. Gujurat. Washing.
or a big wad of space and color
© nevada wier Mongolia. Gobi Desert. Sunset. Camel.
You have to eliminate everything that doesn’t matter so that what is left does matter.
And, sometimes what matters is the beauty of emptiness.