A Backward Glance
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Negative space and highlighting the eyes are concepts illustrated by this photograph.
Negative space is how you use the space unrelated to your subject; if a person is looking to the right that is where the space should go. You do not want their nose touching the edge of the frame. While theories around negative space can get quite esoteric, it is worth thinking about the “empty space” in your photographs.
One of the rules/guidelines in animal photography is that you should be able to see their eyes, hopefully with a reflection of some light (catch eye). While it is possible to brighten eyes in post-production, it has to be done delicately.
An American Goldfinch in a classic pose provided ample negative space for the subject and the existing light complimented the easily seen eyes.