Not every photograph is an award winner.  A photographer’s desire is to make images that rise above the pack in terms of quality and creativity. Even though the images are technically sound and meet the criteria set forth for the assignment, many fail to elicit emotion among the viewers or lack the visual interest to make them memorable. It may be good photography and totally acceptable. But not every “Picasso” has become famous or demonstrates the unique talent he possessed.

Sometimes when I capture an image and view it on the back of my camera, I immediately know it is a “keeper.” Experience, technical and artistic ability are not enough for making good photos of people. At least two more components are necessary. 

Building rapport with persons being photographed is important  in creating remarkable images. I use the term “building” because it doesn’t happen immediately or naturally.  Developing a relationship of trust and confidence is  necessary to capture some of the personality in a picture. Building rapport quickly is a challenge photographers face.

The final aspect needed for making great photos is difficult to define. It is not magic, but it is magical. It may be planned, but ultimately just happens. Combining all of the parts of the photographic process is not enough to achieve an extraordinary photograph. Angles, expressions, lighting, exposure, perspective and other elements coming together facilitate the “magical moment.” Photographers shoot a lot of pictures in search for that moment.

copyright 2011 Jim Lockman/Click!

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