What goes through your mind in the moments as you raise your digital camera up to take a shot and before you press the shutter? If you’re like many digital photographers you’re not thinking about too much – you just want to capture the moment and then move on.
However getting in the habit of asking some simple questions can help take your images to the next level. Here’s 10 questions to get in the habit of asking while framing your shots. I’ve included links in each one to further reading on the topics. I hope you find them helpful:
1. What story am I telling?
This is an important question and one that should help you to make any number of decisions in terms of composition, framing, exposure etc. In essence what you’re asking is ‘why am I taking this shot? What is it’s purpose and what am I trying to convey?’ Is it purely a way to keep a record of a moment, are you trying to capture the emotion of a moment, is it possibly a shot to give to someone, is it part of a larger series of shots or will it be the only shot to commemorate the moment etc. Read more on telling stories with photos
2. What is the visual focal point of this shot?
What will viewers of this picture naturally have their eye drawn to in this scene? Once you’ve identified this focal point you can think about where to place it in the frame (consider the rule of thirds for example).
There are a variety of ways that you can enhance a focal point – some of which we explore here.