What Makes a Good Photo?

4 Mins read

The simplest question in photography is also one of the most complex, with only a few freelance photographers in Dubai being in a position to answer. Have you ever heard of the common phrase that ‘light is everything,’ or ‘composition is everything’ when it comes to describing a good image? 

However, it is for a fact that both these elements can’t be everything. But obviously, there is a grain of truth to such expressions of what makes a good photograph. 

Just like in all art, photography is also subjective, and the way one person looks at an image might not be the same perspective for another. The good thing is that there are fundamental concepts that guide all professional photographers in deciding which decisions to make for a single picture. These are the elements that we cover in this post, as they give us an impression of how to figure out whether an image is good or not. 

The way an image look is all dependent on the photographer. Being a good photographer is not all about how you have mastered your camera or owning the most expensive equipment available. It is all about the qualities one has and how they can see the beauty, even in the most unexpected places, and capture the moment. 

So what makes a good photographer? Well, the answer is all dependent on the niche one is into. There are many genres of photography, and each one of them requires one to have some level of skill or qualities.

But of course, these qualities will always open up regardless of the niche one takes. 

Desirable Qualities of a Good Photographer

1. Creativity

As mentioned earlier on, photography is a form of art that, therefore, requires some level of imagination. For whichever moment or subject, one interacts with, there are a million ways to capture them and create beautiful moments from them. 

2. An eye for detail

A good photographer should have an eye for the smallest details for every photo they take. They should ensure that all the basic elements of photography are adhered to and work harmoniously to convey the right emotion or message. 

3. Flexibility

One of the long-kept secrets of photography is the ability for one to be flexible enough to accommodate new, unavoidable circumstances. Sometimes, aspects such as lighting can be a major bummer, so the best thing to do is to always be flexible; the ability to work with whatever is at your disposal at the moment.

4. Good people skills

Being a professional photographer entails working with all sorts of people on different projects. A good freelance photographer in the UAE is one that can interact with these people on a personal level, as this would go a great way to bring out the right emotion from them.

5. Passion

It is a no-brainer that the main thing that sets a good photographer from others is passion. If you are passionate about what you do, you will always shine throughout your work. 

Five Factors that Help Make Great Photos

As you could have imagined, the qualities of a good photographer are directly proportional to what makes a good image. Here are the 5 basic elements of a good photograph that every photographer should consider:

1. Composition

In layman’s terms, the composition of a photograph is the ability to choose what gets into the picture & where. It is also about what is left outside. This is the one feature that comes naturally to many photographers, but as you would have expected it, some have to learn. There are many rules of composition that have to be adhered to for an image to come out well. Some of them include the rule of thirds, patterns & textures, framing, etc. 

Once you have mastered the composition rules, do not be afraid to play around with them. You can always break the rules for you to come up with your own unique style. After all, who wants to be limited by the rules anyway?

2. Lighting

Apart from using the appropriate equipment, one of the basic rules of photography for beginners is the proper use of lighting. This is one of the most important elements to consider. In fact, photography can be directly translated as ‘painting with light.’ There are different types and sources of light at the disposal of a photographer, such as natural light, studio light, hard & soft lights, etc. 

When taking photos, one should consider not only the quality but also the direction of the light. From where is the subject exposed to light? What type of light is available to you? Will the picture be high or low-key? The answers to these questions will help you take the necessary steps concerning lighting on your next projects. 

Sometimes, the light might not be a necessity when taking certain types of photographs. For instance, one needs to apply creativity when taking pictures at night, and there is limited lighting available. 

3. Timing

A camera gives you the ability to freeze time. Depending on the type of photography you are into, a split second can be the difference between you capturing a memorable moment or just any other picture. While there are many rules of capturing high-speed photography, one has to begin by mastering all the nitty-gritty of timing moments and catching the right emotions. 

4. Inspiration

What was the inspiration that led you to take that photo? What is the story behind it? One of the main roles of freelance photographers in Dubai is to capture moments that can be relived years to come. An image can be taken having considered all the other elements such as lighting, focus, composition, etc. However, it becomes boring if it doesn’t show your perspective of the world or the inspiration behind taking such a photo. 

5. Display of emotions

A good image should be able to display the emotions of the subject, at the moment the photo was taken. While this goes hand in hand with the right timing, all the other factors also come to play. For instance, if you do not have good people skills, it might be more difficult for you to bring out the right emotions from the subject. 


Bad light, a completely failed composition, missed timing, non-existent inspiration, and the lack of emotions displayed during the shoot will completely tear an image into pieces. These five factors are all interconnected, and it is the greatest knowledge freelance photographers in Dubai have.

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