Critiquing Photography Anyone?

Randomly, I see something and just want to take a picture of it.  I’d like to deconstruct some of these random images just to show, it is all about the light.

So many photographers get stuck on photogshop, lightroom, presets, actions, etc., and miss the main ingredient to photography – LIGHT.

Regardless of what you photograph, ask yourself….

  • What is the light going to highlight?
  • Where will the shadows fall?
  • Is it pretty light?  Why?
  • Is it harsh light?  Why?
  • Do I want drama?  Do I want softness?  What mood am I setting?  Is there a mood at all?

The Photo

Here’s the scene….Ceramic mug, incense, and a stool in my office – light was coming from both the left and right windows.  I figured it would highlight the cup and cause the smoke to stand out.  Yup.  Super easy.

Many new photographers become easily offended after asking for a critique of their images.  I encourage every photographer to be honest with themselves and critique their own image first…..

When you are done producing your image, take a step back and look at it.  Do you like it?  Where could you have improved?  Is this a portfolio worthy shot?  Be HONEST!

My assessment of my image above.  It’s okay.  It’s nothing special.  I like the smoke, that’s about it.  The mug itself is too distracting for me and I would have preferred something a bit more simple because it was supposed to be about the smoke.  I don’t hate the image, but I definitely know it could have been improved.

I like the two light sources though, but could have blocked a little of the light on the right especially from the mug.  I like the crop as I wanted an exaggeration of the smoke, so the eye travels left to right and lands on the mug.

It’s so good to critique your own images and realize, there is always room for improvement, but the more you are able to spot what can be improved, the better your photography will be overall.

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