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How to use repetition in photography?


Photography does a massive job of bringing the three-dimensional world into a two-dimensional paper.

Through this procedure, we are able to see colors, shapes, and forms in different ways. We create patterns and rhythm from the world around us.

An appropriate way of doing this is through repetition of the elements like pattern, scale, color, or form.

Follow the nature

five birds flying on grayscale photo
Photo by Robin Spielmann

Look around yourself and you will notice repetition in most places, like :

  • Tiles on the footpath
  • Leaves of a plant
  • Windows
  • Zebra crossing etc

By zooming into these features, you can click a simple daily life pattern that is enhanced by the photographic composition you choose.

You can capture these patterns either at an angle or straight on. Each method will provide a spectacular insight into the subject you direct your camera at.

The absence of any other form is what makes the photo all the more successful. So it is fruitful to have a long lens for this photography technique.

So that you can create an abstract composition of the world and select the objects you focus on out of context.

It can be fun to experiment with different shapes and patterns and give you a newfound appreciation for nature.

Add your own mix

Photo by Jared Sluyter

Once you have selected the patterns, it can be fun to go against the pattern itself and give it your touch by introducing a new element.

Think of a bicycle standing idly supported on a brick wall or a hot air balloon skimming through the clouds. This photography technique will highlight the subject.

This method is outstanding when photographing models or portraits for a fashion photoshoot. If you choose your location as being really picky, you will put your model in an entirely new background.

This trick can give the impression of a whole new world, a place where only your model resides.

Colors and more colors

Photo by Jared Lim

Finding repetitions in forms can be a piece of cake. When looking for repetition in colors, it is easier said than done. Obviously,you can observe situations where the same color repeats in different forms. And street photography immensely utilizes this opportunity.

For example, a person wearing a red outfit might be standing in front of a red car while he or she holds a basket of red tomatoes in hand.

Now you don’t have to keep searching for the same color. Finding repetition in a series of colors is a lot more tricky but totally worth it.

It is most effective when dealing with gradients, complementary colors, or repetition of two or more particular colors. For example, there is a city in Greece, Santorini which is a blend of blue and white buildings.

Look for hidden patterns

Photo by Darren Rowsena

At times a repeated action or process can produce intriguing effects. I’m sure everyone knows the pattern of waves that raindrops cause in ponds.

By studying these features, you can uncover repetitive patterns and rhythms. Use photography to lengthen or freeze time. The freezing of water drops can show swaying and geometric patterns. Long exposures of airplanes taking off at an airport create light trails that disappear into the night sky.

Noticing these types of hidden patterns in repeated actions and photographing them in a way that creates a new image can be a lot exciting. The more creative you get , the better photographs you can take.

These types of shots can be challenging to get straight. It is all about choosing the right composition technique when you have identified two or more related features.

It is suggested to find a way that only shows the repeating features. If there are other objects in the photo, then it can distract from the main repeating pattern and the picture can lose its charm.

Another awesome photographic skill and a technique is to look out for a consistent pattern in a busy background. Think about a mountain range cutting through a serene landscape or few spray bottles near a wall of graffiti.


Photo by Farzad Mohsenvand

If photographed correctly, you can bring the right amount of attention to the subject you are focusing on. This focus can make the ordinary seem extraordinary . You will also notice that this can provide an out-of-the-box version of reality. Your focus will be to pick up on aspects people generally miss in life, like the commonalities between various patterns in the surrounding.

Utilize repetition in photography as a ground and standard concept to work on. So whether you’re a still-life photographer or a wildlife photographer, you can experiment with repetition within your niche.

Repetition is all around. Learning how to capture it can help you click some groundbreaking images.

Attention to minute details forms the key difference between a successful photo and an average photo. The most effective way to sharpen your skills is to get out and practice! Look for organic ways to approach your theme, and the better you’ll get.


Writer CreditKavya Pillai
Digital Showcase of Lens Rider is founded by Nishant Pandey. It is essentially a magazine to guide photographers. Here we put out new blogs everyday having tips and tricks of photography and information about different areas of photography that one can explore.


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