I reblogged this from the site above because I liked the picture, but it made me think “Why is three so powerful?”
That picture wouldn’t work as well with two trees or with four. In fact it’s a good example of what artists call the rule of thirds, divide a picture up into threes lengthways and by height and place your objects of interest at the points of intersection and you tend to get a good picture. Not sure why but it just makes it more interesting, it’s not the only Method of composition but it’s easy and it works.
But it works in stories too: three wishes, three kings, three witches, three billy goats gruff, and even in Harry Potter you have Harry, Ron and Hermione. Again it’s not the only set up, detective stories in particular seem to work in twos possibly following the Holmes and Watson archetype, but three seems to work well.
And if you go a step further and start thinking about structure, then you can see that many books are in three parts, and often chapters can be divided into three parts as well. Once you start looking for it you can see it everywhere.
I think I need to do some research and find out why. In the meantime, can you think of any more examples of the power of three?