Lesson 3: Composition and Framing

Before we start pushing the shutter button we must learn how to look through the viewfinder and with the Instax Mini 9 it is even more important that everything falls into place the first time around.

The viewfinder on the Instax mini 9 is not really great but the good thing is Fujifilm decided to put it in there anyway. If you’re use to the large viewfinders of DSLR’s then you’ll have a hard time adjusting to the pin hole that is the mini 9’s viewfinder.

To reduce our time fidgeting about with viewfinder we must learn basic composition and framing so that we can set-up the scene ahead before we peer through the viewfinder. So here are the basic rules that relate to our Instax Mini 9

  1. The Golden Hour: Remember on the previous lesson that the Instax is extremely sensitive to light, so you have to keep in mind that you have to adjust your scene for the Camera not the other way around so to reduce the chances of over exposing the film you shoot when the sun light is angled not directly beating down on your subject. The Golden hour is when the sun rises or when the sun is about to set. The sun’s angle with respect to the subject adds depth because of the shadows and the light is much softer at these time. DSC_0272
  2. The Rule of Thirds: This rule is alot easier to apply with DSLR’s that have a large viewfinder or with Cameras that have liveview, but the Basic idea is that the Subject of you picture should not be dead center of your frame, it ideally needs to be positioned off center to create a visual appealing photo. The moon moved off center is more dramatic than the one taken dead center. (photo taken on a D5100)
  3. Leading Lines: This is an important aspect in photography that is sometimes overlooked. Leading lines as their name suggest leads the viewer to the subject. Leading lines subtly emphasizes the subject from the background. The majority of the photo is the skyline of Singapore but the railings lead in to me, emphasizing me as the subject of the photo.DSC_0766

You might wonder why these photos are not from my Instax, well i intentionally used the ones from my DSLR because I dont have enough photos from my instax that properly represents these techniques, (Still breaking in) and don’t worry I’ll post an entire album full of pictures from our Instax.


There are still more techniques to learn from photography but i feel these applies the most to our instax considering the limitations of the lens. Next lesson is we will focus on portraiture and it’s composition,

By: Miss TEE

previous lessons:

Lesson 1: Instant Camera theory 101

Lesson 2: Know the Instax mini 9

useful links:

Unboxing: Instax Mini 9

Instax Basic Photography


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