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How Using Your Dominant Eye Can Benefit Your Photography Technique

Posted by Jacob Hawthorne on

You probably know which hand is your dominant hand. Unless you’re ambidextrous, it should be obvious whether you are left-handed or right-handed. But figuring out which of your eyes is dominant is not so easy.

Your dominant eye is the one that’s stronger. It provides more visual input to the brain making it ideal for picture-taking purposes. This article will explain more about how eye dominance works and why knowing which eye is dominant is essential in photography.

What is Eye Dominance?

The visual cortex of the brain has strips of neurons called dominant eye columns. The neurons will respond preferentially to the input from the dominant eye. However, the eye columns have a plasticity that can make eye dominance alternate or make it difficult to determine.

How to Figure Out Which Eye is Dominant?

Eye dominance is not easy to determine, but there is a test that will help you figure it out. Here’s what you’ll need to do.

  1. Extend your arms in front of you with your palms facing out.

  2. Bring your hands together to form a triangle with your fingers and thumbs. Look through the triangle to focus on a fixed object like a picture of the wall.

  3. Look at the object with both eyes. Then close the right eye. Does the triangle move? If so, the left eye is dominant.

  4. Double-check by closing the left eye and seeing if the object moves. Once you determine which eye is ‘moving the object’ you will be able to figure out the dominant one.

Your Dominant Eye and Photography

Knowing which eye is your dominant eye can be useful in various circumstances. For example, it will be helpful if you are aiming at a specific object when shooting an arrow or playing darts. It will allow you to determine the target’s precise positioning.

It also comes in handy when you are taking photos. If you use your dominant eye when you are looking through your camera’s viewfinder, you’ll get a more precise view of your shot and you’ll be able to compose better images.

If you’re not using your dominant eye, on the other hand, some details in your images may be slightly displaced. This could be a real problem if you are trying to center an object and find you are not doing so with precise accuracy. It can also be helpful if you’re using leading lines, the golden ratio, or the rule of thirds.

How Your Non-Dominant Eye Can Come in Handy While Shooting

There are ways your non-dominant eye can come in handy while shooting. It comes into play in terms of peripheral vision.

Say you’re shooting but you are also trying to pay attention to what’s going on outside the camera lens. This could come in handy if you’re shooting street photography and want to be aware of any exciting activities or potential dangers that are outside your scope of focus.

Most people will not be able to see peripherally with their non-dominant eyes. Therefore, they will have to shoot with their non-dominant eye and use their dominant eye to keep tabs on what’s going on peripherally.

Knowing which eye is dominant and which is non-dominant can help you take better photos. While the dominant eye will get more accurate shots, both can work together to provide the best results possible. How will be using your vision to get terrific images?

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