After a shot it is time to go through all the pictures you have taken and pull out the good ones. But what does a good photo do? Let's look at how you judge and analyze your images.
In this article I will mainly focus on assessing your own work to see which of your images are strong and have potential, but you can use the same process to look critically at the pictures you see every day. Look at good pictures and ask yourself why they work (or just as well, look at bad pictures and ask yourself why they don't work) is one of the best ways to learn about photography. If you are one of the regular readers in my tutorial, I will encourage you to look critically at all the pictures I post; they are not perfect, so pull together what you think works and what does not. Just remember, if there is a picture you hate, I deliberately chose to test you ̵
Now, let's break it all down.
Step One: Do You Like It?
The first step when reviewing your photos is simple: what is your reaction to it? Do you like the shot? Hate it? Somewhere in between? If you do not like an image you have taken, flag it as a reject in Lightroom or any directory app you use. It is not so much to continue to consider a picture if your first reaction is indifference.
Here is a photo that was randomly taken from my collection that I immediately rejected. There is not much to think about: my dog is incredibly complicated, the composition is not good, and everything is a little meh.
With others' images, even if your first reaction is indifference, you should at least consider why you feel that way. Is that the subject? The composition? The colors? Is it just a mediocre snapshot? Think about it.
Step Two: Technical Assessment
Technical assessment of an image looks down to two major issues: Is it sharp and is it well exposed? If the answer to either question is no, it is probably worth killing at this stage.
RELATED: How to judge and analyze a good photo  To get a little more specific, the things you need to ask are at this time:
Let's look at some pictures that I rejected for technical reasons. In this shot I missed the focus, so human eyes are blurred.
In this shot, my shutter speed was too slow, so there is some blur from the camera in my hands.
This shot is far too underexposed. I remember fixing my exposure on stage, so I have a better one from a few moments later.
I reject at least some shots that I think of every shoot because I have got something wrong technically.
Step Three: Think of the composition
What usually happens when you shoot is that you take a couple of different pictures of almost the same thing. Here are twelve very similar pictures that I took of a lighthouse near my home. There are a few test pictures in there I played with shutter speeds and waited for the ships in the bay to move around.
Most of the time, the pictures are technically similar: they are sharp, in focus and reasonably well-exposed. They are also of the same substance, so here are small differences in the composition.
RELATED: What is composition in photography?
As you get better, you get a more instinctive sense of what works and not, but it is still worth thinking about the composition consciously.
All this is subjective and it is often difficult to choose between two very similar images. In such cases I either go with my gut or choose the first one I shot.
If you're curious, here's the picture I finally joined the day that shoots the lighthouse.
You shoot it for a specific project, which limited my composition somewhat but overall I'm happy enough with it. The heavy gray sky is not ideal, but I love the depth between the lighthouse in the foreground and the subtle variations in the shadow of the island and the mountains in the background.
Step Four: Pull All Together
When You & # 39; ve pulled out your few favorite photos from a shoot, it's time to edit them. You should consider how to solve any problems, emphasize the strong points and minimize any weaknesses with the image. Now it's time to straighten the horizon and remove any stains. Every digital image you photograph requires at least some small adjustments to brightness, contrast and color. For example, here's the original version of that guy.
And here's my last version again.
I haven't done anything drastically. I shoot out the dark part of the ground at the bottom right and light up everything. Again, it's not the best shot I have ever shot but it's the best I took that day.
Once you have collected a collection of good pictures that you like, you can put them all through this process again. Look at them really critically and tease what you are right, what you are wrong, what you like, what you don't like, and most importantly, why you think about these things. You can, and should, also do the same with other people's images. Even if you just browse through a decent magazine, you give dozens of pictures to judge.