Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Mike Davis on what makes a photograph good

I just stumbled upon a post by US picture editor Mike Davis about what makes a photograph 'good'. And its a clear, well written and useful summing up. It's particularly relevant to me as I continue to click away at things with the best camera I have with me in a mad and web-clogging fashion.

Here's the original post: http://www.michaelddavis.com/blog/2010/9/15/what-is-good.html And here are a couple of quotes that I think are particularly good:

"It's critical to understand that the subject does not make the picture, it is the photographer's insight and skill that elevate the subject to a compelling image. That's why most of the thousands of best photographs are not of inherently interesting subject matter. What makes them interesting is what the photographer did."


"A photographer asked me yesterday how he goes from producing one-dimensional newspapery photographs to making ones that are good. That’s a big question. A small answer is: Before you can make a good picture you have to set out with clarity and depth to say something about what you photograph and you have to make the image reflect the clarity and depth by using the medium’s tools to their fullest. Piece of cake."

So if you want to take better photographs, stop and think about what you're trying to say and how you're trying to say it.

and here's a picture:



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