When a project is to be made on a certain format, such as A4 (21.9 x 29.7 cm, 8 x 11 in.), the entire area must be used. The background (which is white by default) also becomes a part of the message to be delivered; the designer has to consider whether it contributes to the message or not.
Composition is a function of size and location of a certain form or object. The atmosphere changes from one composition to another.
The largest image in the given format is usually grasped by the eye more easily, as you can see on the photos below:
In the photo on the right, the child’s face is much more dominant than in the photo on the left, and it really “jumps out of the frame”.
If there is no “rationale” for margins, the whole area must be used. Objects are more powerful and dominant than color. The eyes are the highlight of the portrait – the main event in the project.
The Portrait format is always more powerful than the Landscape format. Landscape symbolizes death, sleep – something passive. Anything that grows is higher, more alive – Portrait.
When certain elements in the composition are parallel to the lines of the format, it creates a passive situation – static. Any diagonal will be more dynamic and in motion than a parallel element.
The most static diagonal is 45 degrees – it splits the area into two equal triangles, as you can see on the picture below:
Overflowing is good for dynamics as it causes the viewer to complete the vision in his/her mind and it also attracts the viewer’s eye. There is a background and a main image.
The background must have a lower opacity as opposed to the main image in the project.