Use them as tools to determine how to capture a better image.
What makes an outtake an outtake?
Clutter in the background, vague subject matter, improperly focused or incorrect lighting.
For each of the photos in this post, I'll identify some problems and pointers. There are three things that should always be considered: composition (placement of subjects in image, light (exposure) and clarity (sharpness).
Problems: unknown people cluttering shot, nothing readily identifies this as Montmartre or Paris. As a slice-of-life shot, it's acceptable, but a better vantage point could make a difference in the framing or composition. This location is right below Sacre Coeur.
|Montmartre near Sacre Coeur, Paris, Fr. by DG Hudson|
Problems: Crowd scene image at Versailles Palace clutters image (this was an extra large group of tourists, per our guide) The golden impression of the gate is diluted and no detail can be seen.
Wide angle gives more of a view, but reduces detail. (Black is the clothing colour of choice. . .which serves to highlight the contrasting golden hues of the gilt) Waiting until the crowds clear and getting a closer viewpoint would enhance the detail, and the focus on the towering entrance gate.
|Versailles and Tourists, France, by DG Hudson|
Is Traffic Going Beneath the Eiffel Tower?
Problems: An Image of the Eiffel that appears to show traffic going beneath. This a result of foreshortening of the distance, but no traffic actually goes beneath this icon. In addition: the very top of the Eiffel Tower has been cut off in this image (a sacrilege) and traffic is given precedence over the monument.
This image takes advantage of optical illusions caused by distance and vantage point. Changing the distance (depth of field), the height of the point-of-view, and the framing of the Eiffel Tower will improve the results.
|Eiffel Tower and Traffic in Paris, by DG Hudson|
In summary, you can improve your images if you take more time to compose, but in a snap-and-shoot situation, you have to go with your instincts. Practice improves almost everything (sports, art, writing, etc.) These were location images, but portraits and interior photographs also need some preparation for images appropriate for various types of publication (blogs, articles, contests, covers of books)
Do you work at improving your photography, or do you just hope for the best? Not everyone wants to take the time to compose a shot, but the payback is a much better photo. Remember how artists who painted in the open, such as the Impressionists, had to wait for that perfect light?
Do you use your own photos for your blog when you can? Is photography an adjunct to writing or do you sell your photographic work to make it available for use by others?
Please leave a comment to let me know you were here and I'll respond. Thanks for visiting!
All images in this post taken in Paris France, by DG Hudson.