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What Makes a Great Photograph?

Aggomes
Member

I'm a novice using an a6000 with kit lens and wanted to know what are the most important aspects to take into account when taking a photograph? Technical and layman opinions with examples will be appreciated.

For example, below is my favorite picture because the emotion on the bride and groom's face can't be replicated if they were asked to reproduce it again. Also, its thought provoking. Viewers have a different opinion regarding what is the couple looking at? Some say the emotion results from seeing the guests in attendance, while others say seeing the castle from the background is the cause. More philosophical people claim its the excitement about getting off the car, which symbolizes their life as single people looking for love, and beginning their new life together as a married couple in love. Therefore, being left to interpretation is important as well.

I'm looking forward to getting your feedback and learning from everyone!

wedding.jpg 

1 ACCEPTED SOLUTION

RMalayeri
Member

Great question @Aggomes! The Alpha 6000 (a6000) was also my first Sony Alpha camera 👌

I have a few simple pieces of advice that you can focus on as you begin to learn and practice your photography. 

Try to focus on your composition, and start by using some common rules to compose your images. Lookup the "rule of thirds", the "Golden ratio", "Leading lines", and other well known compositional best practices, so you can begin to combine your nack for capturing unique moments, with sound compositional principles. 

For me, I'm always looking to elevate the context of my images through composition. Our eyes are drawn to certain patterns and ratios, so the more you can emphasize those things in your photography, the more people will connect with your images IMHO. 

Here's one example of my focus on composition, at Pearl Harbor using the rule of thirds to direct your eye to my subjects. The sailor and the flag are both positioned in the thirds on each side.

C29E6E49-F03C-4E2E-BA08-B9C4150F0069.jpeg

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4 REPLIES 4

RMalayeri
Member

Great question @Aggomes! The Alpha 6000 (a6000) was also my first Sony Alpha camera 👌

I have a few simple pieces of advice that you can focus on as you begin to learn and practice your photography. 

Try to focus on your composition, and start by using some common rules to compose your images. Lookup the "rule of thirds", the "Golden ratio", "Leading lines", and other well known compositional best practices, so you can begin to combine your nack for capturing unique moments, with sound compositional principles. 

For me, I'm always looking to elevate the context of my images through composition. Our eyes are drawn to certain patterns and ratios, so the more you can emphasize those things in your photography, the more people will connect with your images IMHO. 

Here's one example of my focus on composition, at Pearl Harbor using the rule of thirds to direct your eye to my subjects. The sailor and the flag are both positioned in the thirds on each side.

C29E6E49-F03C-4E2E-BA08-B9C4150F0069.jpeg

LensBrew
Prime Creator

RMalayeri has valid points, and it is necessary to understand the fundamentals of photography and imaging.

When someone who is not into photography asks the same question, I would say the perfect images is the one that stirs emotions in a viewer.

For example, you want a person in a portrait to have the same feelings when they view their image 20 years from now. That is what I would call a perfect photo.

CarolineJensen
Prime Creator

Emotion is so important! It transcends time and even talent sometimes. There are many 'perfect' photos, technically speaking, but they don't draw people in emotionally. We want to connect to images. 

There are two types of connection in photography....connection within the image and connection with the viewer. Even inanimate objects can have emotional impact! One of our biggest tasks as photographers is clarifying our message and conveying emotion. What feelings are you looking to share with the viewers of your images? That is a great place to start! My main objective with nearly all of my images is to convey peace. Once you know what goals you have, then you can work to integrate composition and style elements that buoy that objective. 

Drew_Geraci
Leading Creator

There are a lot of techniques you can use to help tell better stories and improve upon your photographic skill sets. While investing in better gear is great, some of the simplest things you can do are the following;
1) Use a faster aperture lens (allowing you to better separate the subject from the background), this can be achieved with lenses ranging from F1.2 - 2.8. There are a bunch of super awesome lenses that Sony makes that are relatively cheap to achieve this look. 
 
2) Anticipate your subject but thinking ahead of how the scene is going to play out. EX. You know the bridge and groom are going to kiss at the alter, so position yourself in a spot that allows you to capture them with the best possible light and composition. 

3) Use the rule of thirds to better compose your frame (making sure at least 3 out of the 4 points always have your subject in them for the best possible results). 

Hopefully that helps kick your photograph game up to the next level!

Use a fast aperture (f1.2-2.8) to create better separation of your background and subjectUse a fast aperture (f1.2-2.8) to create better separation of your background and subjectFrame your subject in background objectsFrame your subject in background objectsUse a long lens (200mm+) to capture better depth of fieldUse a long lens (200mm+) to capture better depth of fieldLook for abstract ways to shoot your subjectLook for abstract ways to shoot your subject