I recently entered a competition through Lens Culture. I didn’t win, but lived to see another day. Critique is a vital aspect of improving your photography and when you enter a LensCulture event there is alway an option for receiving critique. These guys know there stuff, so it is worth listening to what they say. Here are the pictures I entered and the comments I received. The next competition is on Street Photography…. now maybe I could win that one!
I enjoyed looking through your submission, and can see that you have an innate feel for candid street portraiture. In reviewing your portfolio, images 2 and 5 really stuck out to me as strong examples to use as a guide in your continued photographing. As you submitted to the single images category, let’s take a more in depth look at these images to uncover how you can use them to push your eye and work forward even more.
Photograph 2 is all about angle and layers to me – very well seen and composed! I’d be interested to see what else you shot of this situation. When you find a compelling moment – stick with it a bit to see what unfolds. Photographs 1 and 4, by contrast, lack the sense of context and texture that sets image 2 apart. As a street photographer – use the surrounding environment to your advantage! Also – to be really picky, the focus seems to have slipped a bit in both 1 and 4. Keep an eye on these technical details, even as you respond to the need to work quickly and unobtrusively.
In image 5, while minimal, the surrounding scene and color really sets the boy apart. Quite well seen! Keep looking for color and light, and you’ll find photographs just appear for you when those two things combine. In your framing, you could have pulled back just a bit more, to include the full gesture of the boy’s hands in his pockets. These little details really add up and are often what makes a photograph “great” rather than just “good.” I’ve included some links to photographers talking about composition and street shooting that I hope you’ll find helpful and inspirational moving forward.
Above all – keep photographing! As you move to India – really spend some time editing through and evaluating your contact sheets from the day. If the focus slipped or an image doesn’t work – don’t be afraid to throw it out and move on. Editing is an integral part of the photographic process.
Above all – keep photographing! You’re starting to make some compelling images and I hope to see more!
That all folks! Keep clicking, Chris