How do you objectively characterize what makes a good photograph? It’s not like marking a mathematics paper, where there is always a right or wrong answer. Photography, much like any other art form, is very subjective. However, there are certain elements that all great photographs share in common.
1. Excellent use of LIGHT. Photography literally means drawing with light. Without light there would be no photography. Today's cameras do an amazing job of analyzing the available light and choosing a shutter speed, aperture and ISO that will result in a well lit photograph. Understanding of how light is used will help you take better photographs.
2.Great COMPOSITION. As in great art, great photographs have a sense of compositional form and balance that is pleasing to the eye. Understanding the basic rules of composition are essential to taking better photographs. Once you have learned them though, don’t be afraid to play around with them and break the rules. It’s a way of establishing your own unique style, and who wants to be limited by rules anyway?
o3. Excellent use of SUBJECT. Great photographs typically have a very clear idea or subject. Having a plan and knowing what you want to photograph is the first step in taking a great photograph.
4. Excellent use of TIMING. Great timing is essential in photography, especially with documentary, wedding, sports and street photography. These types of photography require patience and perseverance. The photographer must anticipate ‘The Decisive Moment’; that point in time when all of the elements of the image fall into place and when the emotional pitch of the story is at its peak.