There are many reasons why you might want to crop an image. You might want to make a smaller file size, you might have straightened an image and you need to correct it,or maybe you want to improve the composition.

Let’s first look at cropping to improve composition.
You may have a good picture but you want to get the composition perfect in terms of compositional rules such as the golden mean or the rule of thirds.

Rule of thirds

Open photoshop and go to Edit=>Preferences=>Guides, Grids, slices and Count…

Edit=>Preferences=>Grids, Slices and

Edit=>Preferences=>Guides, Grids, Slices and Count...

Open the dialogue box.

GM4In the ‘grid’ section, enter the figures as shown above.

View=>Show=>Grids

View=>Show=>Grid

You can also use the shortcut (Ctrl + ‘) to turn the grid on and off quickly.

The rule of thirds grid should appear over your image.

Golden Mean

The golden mean is much more complex. There is no preset grid so we will steal a template from here.

Right click on the image and save it to your hard drive. Now open your image in photoshop.

Import the golden mean template and paste it over the top of your image. Resize it to suit.

GM1As this is a transparent file, you should be able to see your image underneath when you make it visible.

GM2A lovely example of the areas of interest falling right on the golden curve. I cropped the image in line with the golden box.

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