Don’t Just Look at Photos; Dissect and Analyze Them!

Dear friend, if you want more inspiration in your own photography, this is my suggestion: don’t just look at the photos of others or the masters, study, dissect and analyze them!


I’ve been dissecting the compositions and images of lots of master photographers whose work I admire, including Garry Winogrand and Inge Morath. In deconstructing and analyzing their images, I’ve discovered several benefits:

  1. I better internalize, remember, and understand their compositions, which I can apply to my own future photos.
  2. I appreciate their photos more, and marvel at them more!

How to analyze the photos of others

You can analyze and dissect the photos even without Photoshop. My suggestion is the following:

  1. When analyzing the photos of others in a photography book, sketch their composition or photo on a separate piece of paper.
  2. Use tracing paper and trace the photos of the masters before you
  3. Use the “Procreate app” on iPad or iPhone to trace, or deconstruct the photos of others whom you like.
  4. Analyze and deconstruct your own favorite photos!
  5. Use Photoshop to draw compositional lines and grids from other master photographers.

Masters of composition

Other compositions to study:

  1. Henri Cartier-Bresson and 5 Henri Cartier-Bresson Lessons
  2. 10 Sergio Larrain Composition Lessons

For more inspiration, pick up STREET PHOTOGRAPHY STARTER KIT >

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