01. How to read a photograph

For me, perhaps the most perplexing question in photography is how to tell whether a particular photograph has merit, or not – or more precisely, how to feel confident that my own opinion about a photograph that I like or dislike, whether it is a photograph taken by another photographer or one of my own, is an informed and reasoned one based on an accurate understanding of the aesthetic content and technical quality of the image.

In an attempt to understand the problem better, and in the hope of using that understanding to solve it, I have begun to study some of my own photographs, analyzing their content and comparing the result with my original intent. I am doing this primarily for my own benefit but if you are interested in this question, perhaps the exercise will be helpful to you too. And if that is the case, or if you think I am on the wrong track entirely, I’d love to hear from you.

Following this introduction, you will find a series of thumbnails. Click a thumbnail to read my analysis of the image. The last one contains a test 🙂

To read a more detailed examination of this issue, please click here




Now, test your reading skill


3 comments on “01. How to read a photograph

  1. The link to the more detailed examination doesn’t work for me, but it’s a very interesting exploration. I will have to come back, as I haven’t finished looking at the images, but I see what you’re doing and appreciate it.

    • Hi Kendall, sorry about the broken link. I’ve fixed it now but it points to the article I linked in my previous upload so you might have read it already.

      • Thanks. I had seen the other article, but I hadn’t read it in depth. I will come back to it when i have more time. I’ve bookmarked it.

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