What makes a picture good, to you?

Trenton Romulox

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I'm not even sure what my own answer would be to this, but I'm just interested to see what everyone out there on the ol' internet thinks. What makes a picture good, to you personally? And you can specify it as a specific type of shot (i.e. landscape, portrait, sports, etc.) if you want to. I'll think about this as I check up on the thread and see what everyone else thinks.
 

ScottS

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Something that i don't see a million of. Something unique.
 
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Trenton Romulox

Trenton Romulox

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Something that i don't see a million of. Something unique.

I totally agree. Although, that's not to say a picture of a sunset we've all seen a thousand times can't be good. But, at the same time, something unique is definitely good to see, I think we can all agree on that. In fact, a decent shot I've never seen is usually better in my mind than a great shot I've seen done a hundred times, just because it's breaking new ground, doing something new or something old in a new way. Portraiture and landscapes is where you can see something really good, but really stale, a lot. A lot.
 

ScottS

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I totally agree. Although, that's not to say a picture of a sunset we've all seen a thousand times can't be good. But, at the same time, something unique is definitely good to see, I think we can all agree on that. In fact, a decent shot I've never seen is usually better in my mind than a great shot I've seen done a hundred times, just because it's breaking new ground, doing something new or something old in a new way. Portraiture and landscapes is where you can see something really good, but really stale, a lot. A lot.

Very true!
 

molsen

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personally, i like images to be sharp #1. in rare circumstances, being out of focus works, but this rarely works for most people.
 

SCHNOOBS

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in my opinion, there is no specific topic that would be better than any other, however photogrpahers are the composers of a wonderingful symphony of colors, light and ummph! taking the film-frame/sensor envolope to the -nth degree.
 

VTMurphy

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The most interesting shots to me are the ones that show a familiar subject in a new perspective . Make me think of the subject in a new way and you've captured my attention .
 

dpolston

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emotion.

I have seen photos that have made me instantly happy, sad, enraged, envious and dozens of other emotions.

Some photos I have taken and only what I call "David Photos" because I am probably the only one on the planet that likes it. But the situation to which it was shot (even though by most critiques it would be a horribly technical print) or the back story if the person or thing depicted instantly tells the entire story.

2 quick examples:

This is my wifes favorite baby photo of my oldest daughter (now 15)

$baby jess 1 copy.jpg

This is one of my all time favorite photo of my youngest daughters (2004)

$Fall Fest 2004 web.jpg

emotion.
 

Alpha

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To me, a good photo has a definite subject or subjects which are generally in focus.
 

LaFoto

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Uniqueness in itself is good.
I doubt, though, that with the millions, or is it BILLIONS?, of photos being taken every day today it is still possible to come up with something unique.

What makes a good photo for me is a clear subject (preferably close-up, or even macro), good light (backlight is something I will always love to see!), no clutter (i.e. an eye for background elements, too), and often the effect a wide open lens can give, i.e. the subject dissolved from its background by blurring that out. (I am not sure "dissolved" is the correct word here :scratch: :oops: ).

This was more spoken with nature photos in mind.

When it comes to man-made things (houses, roads, factories, whatever), I like clear lines, vanishing points, repetition, good contrasts, heavy play of light and shadow, geometrical forms.

With people I like candid shots which make them look their best. I love to take people photos with the telephoto lens. (Which also nicely blurs out the backgrounds, back to what I like about photography - for our eyes can NOT blur out backgrounds like that!)
 

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When taking pictures of people I like to catch them being natural. I hate posed pictures they are too fake. Some of the best wedding pictures I have seen or taken have been when the subjects are getting ready to pose and the camera was quickly clicked. I think then you show the honesty of the situation, rather than having a posed smile.
Sunsets in my mind are always a good subject, just because I like sunsets. But if the sunset could have a person, building or other object as a sillouette that makes the pictures even better.
Here are two of my all time favorite pictures of my son and my nephew, that I took for a college class.

doindishes.jpg


waterbabies3.jpg
 

Joves

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Well I have to say a picture I like has to have content. I see so many pics where there is absolutely no content. This is especially true of landscapes. Also it has to be well composed. I cant define a certain thing just that I know when I like it, no matter what it is.
 

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I tend to look for visual appeal. Sharp lines and good contrast mean a lot to me. It depends on an individual photograph, but good composure tends to mean more to me than subject matter. This will probably change as I get older, but for now I like good technical and compositional decisions rather than spur of the moment emotion.
 

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