Lessons Learned From a Recent Photo Critique

There is nothing like gathering with dozens of fellow photographers in a dark auditorium to see photos projected on a large screen, while listening to a professional judge provide feedback.

Every other month, the Sandhills Photography Club invites a professional photographer to judge member photos with a pre-selected topic. The February meeting saw a record 91 photos entered in three categories, from beginner to advance, with Reflections as the theme.

So here is what I learned......

* Avoid Hotspots – Your eye is drawn to the brightest part of a photo, which can be distracting.

* Have a Clear, Compelling Subject – Don’t let the viewer guess what the photo is about.

* Border Patrol – Get rid of objects that creep into the frame.

* Leading Lines – This one is big. Try to put an element in the lower left, with a line that draws the viewer to the subject.

* How Does it Look in Black & White? Enough Said.

* Always Add a Vignette – Unless you don’t want to, which
brings me to me last point……….

In the end, it doesn’t matter what someone thinks of your photo. After all, you are the creator - it’s your photo. You must love it.

Put a little piece of yourself in every photo. Shoot what you love. Shoot what brings you joy.

If you get a chance to enter a photo competition, do it! Don’t fear rejection.

BTW - My photo of Iron Mike above, taken at the Airborne and Special Forces Museum in Fayettevile, scored a 6 out of 10 - but I love it anyway!