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Three Main Questions to ask1. What is good about it?2. What is not good?3. How could it be better?
Evaluating a PrintYour first goal is to move beyondyour own likes and dislikes and lookat the technical, objective factors thatdefine a photograph.Distinguish between style andstandards
Style VS. StandardsStyle- Standards- Largely a personal matter Are not an opinion Style is developed by every Skill is the key part of standards photographer, and is a unique way of seeing things and Four basic factors determine a photogr expressing them. VS. standards- In the best photographs, the style 1. Value is consistent 2. Clarity Liking or disliking a style is strictly an opinion! 3. Composition 4. Presentation
ValueRefers to the range of light in a photograph- fromblack through grey to whiteThe more CONTRAST a photograph has, the greater its visual impact willbe.A photograph that contains only black and white, may have a lot of impact,but will most likely lack interest.A good photograph needs to have shades of gray to attract interest. Make sure the grays are “good” grays “Muddy” grays result from under-exposing when shooting, under developing the film, over-exposing the print, or removing the developer too soon.
ClarityPrimary key is if the photograph is in focus or not.Questions to ask yourself- What is in focus? Whatshould be in focus?A focused photograph can be either soft or sharp- Soft: Edges blurred Sharp: Everything is clear and defined Generally the main focus of the picture should be in focus
Improving clarityFocus is the most common problem to bad clarityCreate better clarity by- Increasing the shutter speed Increasing the aperture so that depth of field decreases Decreasing the chances of camera shake by holding the camera still
presentationTo determine a good photograph, care and skillshould be used to produce every final print.Certain things should not be seem on a goodphotograph’s negatives- including white flecks on the negatives finger prints on the negatives scratches on the negatives dark circles caused by bad agitation while developing on the negatives
CompositionFour objectives of composition Point-of-interest Cropping Lines Aesthetics
Point-of-interest compositionAsk yourself, “Is there a point-of-interest?” a photo should have one clear point of interest the single focus should be in the general area of the center of the frame but not exactly in the center
Cropping Composition CompositionDetermine if the photograph is “tight”, meaning is theframe filled with important elements, or is there wastedspace?Negative space can enhance a photograph, but it needsto have a connection with the central image. Frame should narrow in on what is important.What is the overall balance of the composition? Thecomposition can be balanced in two ways- static ordynamic. Static- weigh the composition by having the point-of- interest near the center of the frame Dynamic- weighting to composition more to one side then the other or towards the corners
Lines and curves in a photo have a tremendous effecton its impact.A single line can “pull” or “point”, drawing theviewer’s eye towards or away from the point-of-interest.Lines and curves should be used correctly in aphotograph so that they enhance the meaning of thephotograph and are not random.
aesthetics Composition CompositionAesthetics can make a difference between a skillfulphotograph and an ordinary photoAll photographers try to make their photo differentfrom everyones elses by the style they useWhen critiquing a photograph you must be able todetermine when there is style and when there is not
Sample Critique In this photograph, the value is not very good and the grays are muddy.The clarity of this picture isokay, it is not perfect. Also,the point of interest is hard to determine in thisphotograph. Therefore thispicture could be enhanced a lot.
Sample CritiqueThe following picture is by aprofessional weddingphotographer. This photographhas good value, because of therange of grays in the photograph.The image does not have goodclarity. The photograph is blurryand almost looks as if there asslight camera shake. There is asingle point of interest in thephotograph. The point of interestin the couple. (http://adayofbliss.com/)
Sample CritiqueIn this photograph by Robert Duvall Argentina, some areas are better than others. Thevalue in this photograph is lacking here because there is not a very good range of grays.The clarity is okay in this picture because the people in the background are clear. Thepoint of interest is not exactly certain, because it is not clear if the focus is the back of thepeople head of the people in the back ground. (http://adayofbliss.com/)
CitationsOBrien, Michael, and Norman Sibley. The Photographic Eye: Learning toSee with a Camera. Worcester, MA: Davis Publications, 1995. Print.Wolfgang Freithof Studio. "NYC Wedding Photographers and Photojournalists." ADay of Bliss. N.p., n.d. Web. 15 Jan. 2013.
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