If you want honest feedback on your photos, share them on ARSBETA.COM — if not, you can always critique your own photos!
Some simple ideas:
1. Draw composition lines over your own photos
To better understand your photo compositions, draw composition lines on top of it! For example, I use Dropbox to look at my photos on my iPad, then I take a screenshot of it (home button+power button), then I sketch the compositions I like and see!
Some more examples:
2. Does the photo have a dynamic composition?
A dynamic composition has vigor, energy, and excitement! For me, a dynamic composition can include a diagonal composition, strong hand-gestures, facial expressions, or emotions.
3. Is the light epic?
When looking at your photos, judge them by the light. Does the light look epic to you? For example, I consider ‘epic light’ during sunrise or sunset (during “golden hour”):
I like surrealism in street photography — a small detail which makes the photo seem unreal. For example, the use of a flash reflection on a mannequin.
Or look for decapitated body parts:
5. Dramatic shadows
Look for dramatic shadows — especially when they are curved composition (arabesque):
6. Look at your photos as small thumbnails
The ‘small thumbnail test‘: look at your photos as small thumbnails, and choose your best compositions when you look at them small!
Why does this work? If your compositions work well as small thumbnails, the compositions are probably strong!
Some of my contact sheets:
7. Does your photo have personal significance for yourself?
Don’t worry whether your photo is ‘good’ or ‘bad’ — ask yourself:
“Does this photograph have personal significance for myself?”
If so, pick it and choose it! Ultimately I think we must make photos which spark joy in our heart. This means pick your family snapshots– moments which make you smile :)
And if you’re really confused, signup for arsbeta.com (my startup alongside my friend Kevin and Cindy), upload your photo, and get real feedback from other photographers!
And ultimately, it don’t matter whether others think your photos are good or not. Make photos that you like to look at!
JUST SHOOT IT.