Let’s say you happen to be walking along a scenic riverfront at sunset. There are interesting architectural features on the South side of the river and the sun, not having recently changed it’s course, is setting off to the West. There are just enough clouds along the horizon to make for a decent sunset, but the sky above the horizon is clear, without much interesting going on.
You think, “Oh, what a nice sunset reflecting on the river,” and you pull out your iPhone. But you quickly discover that taking a picture of the sunset doesn’t include the interesting buildings and taking a picture of the buildings misses the best part of the sunset. To boot, the buildings are too dark. What do you do?
Well, this is the joy of photography: sometimes you have to choose. You can’t always get what you want . . . so what do you need?
And that is the other joy of photography–you get to decide.
I’ve shared 6 of the images I took in the gallery above, each with the scene framed differently. Below, I’ve taken these 6 images and pointed out the things that bug me about them. There are many. However, I think it’s useful to learn what other people look at and what bugs them in photographs when you’re trying to figure out what makes one photograph more appealing than another. Remember, there are no rules, but part of photography is learning to see things differently. Sometimes that includes your own photos.
Your Assignment: Take a look at the comments I’ve made on my photos below. I’ve color-coded them for things I think are positives (green), things that are less-than-ideal but tolerable (yellow), and things that are a deal-breaker for me (red).
Do you agree with my assessment? Do you see other things that bother you (there are many more things that bother me than I included in the comments)? Do you like things I don’t? Did you notice the things I pointed out before you read my comments?
Why do you think two people look at the same photo and see it differently?