A reason for me to look more closely
at your photo – that’s what!
I judged a photography competition earlier this year. As I was trying to narrow down the 9 images left standing into the 6 honorable mentions slots left available to me, I found myself looking at the little things. One of these ‘little things’ was the image title.
It never ceases to amaze me how people will take exquisite care in setting up, capturing and post-processing a shot and then give it a name like “Untitled 2”. Sometime they don’t’ even think to differentiate it from all their other untitled shots and will call it literally “untitled” not even bothering to capitalize the ‘u’. I guess that means their image is unimportant (small u).
Everywhere you post an image in today’s social picture sharing venues, there are places for titles and/or captions. These fields give you a reason to understand what the artist felt was important and how they did it. If you leave them blank, you rely solely on their first quick impression to capture a viewer and make them explore. Give them an assist-give them a title that compels them to more.
Lone Hiker in Desolation
Now, doesn’t that make you look a little harder at the photo? Immediately there is emotion, imparted by my words, applied to my image and making you feel something. You are also looking more closely. Where is this hiker? As you scan the image trying to find the hiker you begin to feel the loneliness, the desolation and the immensity of the landscape. On a big print at point blank range, it is easy to notice the hiker – if you take a little time to wander in the photo. A compelling title does this for you – it sucks you in. I could have called this Desolation, or Lost in the Dunes but neither of those titles makes you necessarily look for a “Lone Hiker”.
Try a little harder to compose a compelling, emotional title for your imagery. Make it personal. I could have titled this “Dang Hiker! Ruint My Desolate Dunes” introducing some humor and commentary. And remember, anything is better than “Untitled”.
Oh and if you can’t see the hiker at these small sizes, I have zoomed on in for you.
Can You See Me Now?
Oh, and that photo competition… Untitled didn’t make honorable mention. If I missed something compelling in the image because I wasn’t compelled, consider titling it differently next time.
If you would like to explore in this print in the privacy of your home, you can purchase it here. Click on the button below to order your copy today. It would make a great Christmas gift (now I feel dirty).
10×18 – Signed Print
Lone Hiker in the Dunes: $ 44.95 USD
includes shipping to the lower 48 of the US.
Rikk Flohr © 2011