Your photos (60)
Take Better Photos

Hints and tips
by Philip Grosset

Click photo above
for contents list

with comments from Philip Grosset

"This was taken at about 8;00 am one January morning in Colorado with a Nikon n 70 I did not use filters just a uv with bw film I would like your feed back I wanted to give the feeling he was having a quiet thought thank you so very much for you time." (Karen)

Man sitting cropped
Man sitting
Your photo (on the left) is attractive, but might be improved (as always!) if you moved a bit closer in and positioned your subject to the side, as on the right. Here his figure is now conveniently balanced by the reflection of the tree in the top right of the picture. It's altogether a very pleasing scene, but, if you really wanted to show him having a quiet thought, this might have been better achieved by having his face in the immediate foreground (so that we could really see it), with the tranquil scene in the background. As it is, we can't quite see his expression. But I still like it!

"This picture was taken with my boyfriend's camera. I don't know what brand it is but it's a manual camera. He didn't give me any comments but I was hoping u could. There was a slight breeze when I took this picture. But my boyfriend blocked it. I have many other pictures of flowers and swans and my pet dog but I don't have a scanner so I can't send any more pictures to u unless my boyfriend scans and sends it to me. Tell me what u think about it because I kind of want to get into photography. Thank you for your time. Love, Jamie."

Flowers cropped
Your photo (on the left) is attractive and colorful, and the really sharp focus shows off the subject very well. But the next step, I suggest, could be to look at the flowers just a bit more carefully and decide which are the ones that most appeal to you. I illustrate one possibility on the right. Very often, the closer you get to a flower, the more interesting it becomes.

"Please critique. You have a great site!
Man in Church Pew ........Chester Cathedral, Chester England
Main Tower Conwy Castle........Conwy N. Wales, UK
Golden Flower Path.......Bodnant Garden, N. Wales, UK
Camera: Pentax K-1000 50 mm lens Kodak Gold 200 film, comercially developed; Scanner: HP ScanJet 3200C; some cropping in MGI PhotoSuite. Thanks!" (John Paffel Houston Texas)

These are both well composed images that give a good idea of their subjects. The snag, with the Chester Cathedral picture (on the left) is that it is all a bit blurred. It obviously needed a long exposure, so a tripod could have made all the differerence. But I realise that's a lot easier said than done! It was a very good idea to include the man in the foreground as this gives the picture human interest and depth, and also communicates a sense of scale.
The Conwy castle photo (on the right) is effective too, with a good use of foreground, lots of detail and also an impression of the countryside below. Another well chosen camera position.

River cropped
The mass of blurred leaves at the top of your photo (on the left) certainly provide dramatic and unusual framing, but they do rather swamp the picture. On the right, I've tried to shift the emphasis more onto the scene below them. They now come about a third of the way into the picture - the old "rule of thirds", and the water more effectively leads us into the picture.

Reply from John Paffel: "Thanks for the comments! Yes, I see now how the tripod would come in handy for the cathedral shot. The cropping suggestion for the Bodnant photo is well taken too. Keep up the great work!"

Go on to YOUR PHOTOS (61)