The Fstoppers community is full of talented photographers producing images beyond the average photographer’s capabilities. When you view them all together in a gallery, there are certain things that make excellent photographs stand out beyond the mass of above-average images being shared regularly. Here’re a few of the things that catch my eye.
I browse through the community’s uploaded images on an almost daily basis. Throughout the last couple of years doing so, I’ve become accustomed to certain clichés and trends that make their appearance more often than not. I’m talking about the shots we’ve all seen dozens of times before: city skylines, pretty sunsets, amateur models, and other abstract subjects photographed with no real context behind them.
This isn’t to say I don’t enjoy landscape and cityscape photography, but it does mean that if dozens of other photographers have stood in the exact place you stood to capture your image, yours probably won’t grab my attention (unless you did something substantially different).
Photographers like Michael Shainblum seemingly go out of their way to capture images that differ from those taken by other photographers. This is a great recipe for attention.
It’s always refreshing to run across an image that stops me and forces me to spend some time looking at it. For this reason, I credit originality for making photographs stand out above the rest.
Ian Knaggs' original photograph titled "Flour Plate & Egg" forced me to look closer.
Add a Title and Description
The topic of originality leads me to something else that can separate an image from the others like it: an appropriate title and description. Sometimes, it takes a few words to bring an image into perspective and help the viewer feel an emotional response. Leaving the title and description boxes blank when sharing images with the Fstoppers community is only doing yourself and the image you’re proud enough to share an injustice. Spend a few minutes to compose your thoughts and share what it is about the photograph that makes it special to you.
Production and Post-Processing
There are so many different styles of producing and editing digital images today, and much of whether or not any of those various methods are better than the others is quite subjective. Personally, images that have great composition and minimal post-processing seem to catch my attention over those that more closely resemble digitally manipulated graphic design masterpieces.
Despite my feelings about most highly manipulated photographs, I really enjoy digital artwork such as the images created by Yaroslav Lukiyanchenko. They're incredible and so are his methods. Sometimes, the line between what's real and what isn't becomes hard to distinguish, and images such as Lukiyanchenko's are difficult to compare to images created using other methods. Uploading a behind the scenes image can help convey to the viewer the methods used to create images such as the following.
Sometimes, it takes seeing someone’s work more than once for it to stand out. This means keep sharing your work and keep it consistent. Changing your shooting style or editing style to match someone else's for the sole purpose of gaining attention isn’t a good practice. Stay true to yourself, and if what you do is special and you’re sharing it consistently, it’s going to get noticed.
I truly enjoy browsing through the mass amounts of images that are shared among the Fstoppers community. I try to rate images fairly. Stay true to yourself and remain consistent. Your work is inspirational in many ways.
Lead image by: Dmitry Bocharov