Reviewing Images From a Professional Editorial Assignment

In the age of social media, we often only ever get to see the best version of things: the best-looking meal images, our best-looking selves in selfies, the best this, the best that. For photographers, this too can mean that we only ever get to see the best images from other photographers.

Zach Dobson breaks down this way of thinking by presenting all the images he took on an editorial assignment for a client. Every single image he took is presented, from those where the lighting isn’t just right to ones where the subject may have just one eye closed or is posed just slightly incorrectly. He shares everything, and it’s breathtakingly refreshing.

Dobson reviews the images in this video and provides not only his reasoning for some of them but also shares the final image, which the client ended up using. The parallel, of course, is that the client picked something Dobson may not have, as we all have different preferences. More importantly, however, is his reasoning for editing down what he ended up submitting as well.

Working on location with shifting ambient light is a challenge at the best of times. Creating an editorial image in camera is even more challenging when you have less control over what the subject or others in the frame may be doing. You’re creating an image, but you’re also finding the image to create, rather than actively manipulating the parts of the frame such as the talent or the lighting; this probably isn’t too dissimilar from wedding photography.

Although Dobson did a great job with the assignment, I think the takeaway here is to be self-critical of your work. Look at the images and compare the minutiae of each one. Take your time and sit with it, at least at first. A tighter, cleaner edit of your work presented well is certainly much better than having multiple, exceedingly similar images in your portfolio.

Ali Choudhry's picture

Ali Choudhry is a photographer in Australia. His photographic practice aims to explore the relationship with the self, between the other, and the world. Through use of minimalist compositions and selective use of color and form he aims to invoke what he calls the "breath". He is currently working towards a BA (Honours) in Photography.

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Ewwy....vertical videos. :D

These young people! I tell ya, back in my day... ;)

In this case, it wasn't a young person. He's much older. It would be like some old dude hanging out where teenagers hangout 'cause he's trying to be in with in-crowd. As of a month ago, the majority of his videos are vertical, a little less than 1 minute, and 360p. Man, I can't stand social-media-sheep weak posers.

This always makes me laugh.....

I wonder if someone comes up eventually with vertical movie theaters.

Perfect example of if you take a thousand pictures and you have no idea what your doing you will get a good one.