Photo Review - Kaikoura by Mary Wagstaff

"This image of Kaikoura in New Zealand is a favourite for me as it shows the rawness of the

rocks against the curvature of the earth at the horizon. I also like the way the clouds mimic

the rock formations." - Mary Wagstaff

Reviewer's Thoughts This is a lovely photo. I like how you captured the contrast between rough stones and soft water and even softer sky.

There are two things that I think would improve this photo though.


When you’re deciding on the composition of your photo, the first thing you should ask yourself is what do you want viewers to see and how do you want them to feel.

The key to good composition is to have the viewer’s eyes either ‘resting’ on the whole image or travelling through it in some specific order. What you don’t want is to make them to feel is that their eyes can’t settle on any specific point.

In your photo your horizon is perfectly centred and is dividing your photo into two equal parts.

This causes your eyes to be drawn to the centre and then automatically start wondering around, up and down instead of following the composition. If you gave more attention to the rocks and left only ⅓ of the photo for sky, the rocks would be a starting point that would lead the viewer through whole picture slowly from bottom to the top.

One more small detail is that your horizon is slightly tilted, that’s something that can be easily fixed afterwards in post-processing.

Properly cropped and straightened your photo should look something like this (see image below) - See how I've cropped part of the sky?

Cropping your photo like this gives it a new sense of depth and a new perspective.

Contrast A bit more contrast is the second thing I wouldn’t mind seeing in this photo. While it is good as it is, higher contrast would add some vibrance and a more dramatic look to both the rocks and the sky as below.

#photocritique #photoreview #seascape #photo #beach #coastal

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