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I believe composition is not only the most important part of photography, it’s the fundamental contributor to making captivating images that engage the viewer.

That’s why I think it’s also the most difficult part of creative photography, and it’s the area I spend most of my time studying and trying to improve. I also hear from many photographers and students that it’s their most frustrating challenge as well—whether on my workshops, or in talks, or in my Q+A days on Facebook.

In fact, I’d venture to say it’s probably the area you’d like to improve the most.

For me composition is like a challenging puzzle that I try to solve every time I go out to photograph. A even though I’m more comfortable with decisions now than I was a decade ago, I am always pushing myself to find ways to make stronger, simpler compositions. The difference now is that I enjoy the challenge, much like moving from a solved puzzle to a more difficult one.

Over time I developed a mental checklist that I use to evaluate my images, whether while I’m composing in the field or editing in Lightroom. I also use this checklist when I critique student images, and it helps me remain focused on the positives and use those as building blocks for improvement into the future.

I created a PDF document of the checklist to help you evaluate your images honestly and compositionally.

Enter your email in the form below to get it delivered to your inbox right away.
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I’m also in the process of developing some in-depth online composition courses that may help you in your creative path as a photographer, including interactive feedback of your images. Stay tuned!

Questions or feedback? Please share in the comments below.

Experience your work in the real world. The Printmaker Masterclass is live and growing! Learn more here.

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