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Thread: What is a Keeper

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    What is a Keeper

    I know a lot of what we see is subjective, but how do YOU judge a photo? I'm not asking how to win a photo comp, but what makes a photo a keeper, what makes it your favourite photo?Does it have to be technically perfect?
    Does it have to tell a story?
    Where does composition sit on the scale of "greatness"
    What gives it the WOW factor?
    What have I missed?Your thoughts?
    Last edited by Kym; 17-03-2012 at 11:13pm. Reason: Removed colour black formatting - does not display well on dark skin

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    Do I love it?

    Answer yes to the above and you've got a keeper.

    You've answered your own question, really. What one person may consider a keeper may be the very last thing someone else might use. It's ENTIRELY subjective. I have a photo of my puppy that I love and have up on the wall. She's sitting on a matt and I've just managed to catch the moment where she's licking her chops and looking at my camera like it 's the tastiest treat in the world. I adore this picture. Give it to someone who takes photos of show dogs for a living and they'd find it abhorrent.

    If a picture meets your own personal standards, it's a keeper.

    (PS - Black text on dark grey = hard to read. Don't do that.)
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    Arch-Σigmoid Ausphotography Regular ameerat42's Avatar
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    I can't see a thing you're saying.
    CC, Image editing OK.

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    a person who stands behind the stumps.

    lol

    a keeper, well, a photo that i think might have value or be looked at twice. Only represents maybe 10% of all the photos I take the rest get the big DEL
    Darren
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    I agree that your questions are also your answers. It really does depend.

    The only picture of our wedding that is on display is a candid taken by a friend with their point and shoot. We did not even know it was taken but it captures us so well.

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    Loves The Wildlife. Mary Anne's Avatar
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    I can hardly read the text just as well the Title is white ...... *What is a Keeper* something you like

    I shoot with Canon And Olympus Cameras



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    Hi Thanks for the replies, Just a muse really, I was sorting thru some old photos & wondering why I kept some of them, but I guess the older you get the more you have.

    sorry about the Grey on Gray, in my Reply box it is white on Grey. Can I edit the original?

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    Administrator ricktas's Avatar
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    A keeper to me is any photo I do not want to delete. It is not about being a perfect photo, its about a range of things, and often the emotional value (to me) of a photo, over-rides any technical flaws.
    "It is one thing to make a picture of what a person looks like, it is another thing to make a portrait of who they are" - Paul Caponigro

    Constructive Critique of my photographs is always appreciated
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    what he said^
    Thanks Steve
    Winer of the sheep week 2 + 6
    www.atkimages.com.au "If your pictures aren't good enough, you're not close enough," ROBERT CAPA"
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    Way Down Yonder in the Paw Paw Patch jim's Avatar
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    Remembered to take the lens cap off

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    D750 Shines cupic's Avatar
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    You know you have a keeper when its get a second look and vice a verse comments from other ppl

    cheers




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    A. P's Culinary Indiscriminant mongo's Avatar
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    a "keeper" is anything that it not a "tosser outer". Something you would feel a sense of loss or uncomfortable to not have any longer.

    Mongo does things by elimination. This is a hangover from the film days when Mongo would look at a roll of 36 slides and instantly throw away anything that did not immediately grab him in the first round of looking at them. He would then repeat the process and one or two more would be trashed. In the end, he would keep anything from none to about 6 on average. Mongo found this process had him consciously and unconsciously doing the exercise of "what is a keeper" for him i.e. going back to what Mongo originally said - anything that it not a "tosser outer".
    Nikon and Pentax user



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    Administrator ricktas's Avatar
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    In reality I do similar to Mongo. One uploaded to my computer from the memory card, I have the photos in Lightroom. I flick through the photos one by one, and any that I do not want to keep, I hit X on the keyboard for. These are usually blurry, over-exposed ones etc. Once I have been through the entire shoot. I then use the 'delete rejected photos' option in LR to remove them (from LR and my HDD with one click).. Everything else is a keeper.

    Another thing I would suggest, is as a beginner, keep all of them..even if for only a week or two. Go and look at these rejects, and look at what did not work, why are you rejecting them? What settings did you use? Were they the 'wrong' settings? What don't you like about the photo? Use the answers to these questions on your own photography, to learn! If you rejected a photo cause it was to blurry, why is it blurry? Understanding what you did wrong, rather than just deleting it cause it is wrong, will make you a better photographer next time you take the camera out, cause you will now what not to do!

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    Ausphotography irregular Mark L's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ricktas View Post
    Another thing I would suggest, is as a beginner, keep all of them..even if for only a week or two. Go and look at these rejects, and look at what did not work, why are you rejecting them? What settings did you use? Were they the 'wrong' settings? What don't you like about the photo? Use the answers to these questions on your own photography, to learn! If you rejected a photo cause it was to blurry, why is it blurry? Understanding what you did wrong, rather than just deleting it cause it is wrong, will make you a better photographer next time you take the camera out, cause you will now what not to do!
    Keep them for a little longer even. PPing has been a steep learning curve for me. Now I've learned some, I've been able to go back and improve some images I originally thought couldn't be improved.
    So as I'm learning about digital and PPing, a keeper to me is anything that's not obvious rubbish. This is starting to change though.
    "Enjoy what you can do rather than being frustrated at what you can't." bobt
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    Member MMF's Avatar
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    Took some photos today that I though were goners a few clicks in PP and I've saved some of them. At the moment i keep 95% of my shots, i plan to go back and look at them as my skills progress to see how I've grown as a photographer and also to see if more become keepers as my PP skills improve who knows what may happen with time.

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    Not sure what is a true "Keeper", but I'm slowly learning not to discard anything except the most obvious fails.
    As I learn more about photography, and specifically learn what is needed in the way of PP'ing when shooting RAW, I'm finding that many of my photos may not have been as bad as I first though, I just didn't know back then how to get them up to scratch with the right PP.

    For example, I had a backlit tree photo I put up here, that I was really disappointed in and used as an example here to ask how to photograph backlit trees because I considered the shot a bit of a failure. Others here with much more experience took the low res copy I posted, and PP'ed the photo up to a point that it was probably worth keeping. Still no award winner, but definitely one I probably wouldn't have deleted. Unfortunately, because of lack of knowledge, and disappointment with the original straight out of camera image, I appear to have deleted that original RAW image as NOT being a "Keeper"

    It seems that experience is at least a part of knowing what is and isn't keepable. But as you'll see in a regular contributor's signature, experience is usually what you get AFTER you need it.
    Last edited by Ezookiel; 13-03-2012 at 1:00pm.
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    One that tells a story or conveys an emotion.

    Though I guess that depends on the subject - eg wouldn't be true for my series of fruit triptychs, but is for people and places.
    Merri

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    i keep a lot, but what im trying to really 'keep', or show, i go over and over through the potentials, and the ones that keep popping up, whether for a great pose, shot, emotion, whatever, is what i consider

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    If I like it I keep it.....unless you are entering a competition it doesn't really matter what others think! What is great for me might not be for someone else
    A true photograph need not be explained, nor can it be contained in words.
    Ansel Adams

    Canon 450D & 550D; 10-22mm Sigma; 24-70mm F2.8L; 70-200mm F2.8L; 18-55mm F3.5-4 EFS



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    I think Rictas and Mongo have said most what i would say but will add that once upon a time everything for me would be a keeper even after editing the Raw files would get sored on a disk incase one day i came up with a tad more knowledge in my editing skills to bring more out of that raw file.
    Nowadays i bring everything up in Bridge and only the sharpest and files that show good Histigrams remain for any editing and like i guessmost do , there's more than one file of the same scene or subject.
    And like others have said as your skilbase developes you automatically know which you wish to save and which to delete.
    The only file for me that doesnt get tossed is one with grandkids that i may think i can never capture the moment again and then i keep till a simillar shot is captured and is more cherished if thats the reight term to use??...
    This last fortnight or so ive rattled off that many clicks trying to get my flash Photgraphy to an acceptable level and at a guess out of maybe a hundred or so test shots ide say ive kept halfe a dozen just for the exif data of ones with good exposure "Just for a reminder if need be" .
    Cheers n my two bobs worth.
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