Picture Critique

For a couple of weeks, Otto von Münchow kindly shares his expertise if you want an opinion about a picture – here is mine. Some suggested changes are not possible, the shot was situational, but the cropping is. So, I have followed his advice, and by comparing the photos you can see the difference it makes. I attended one of Otto’s online courses this summer, where he also stressed the importance of waiting for the right moment. I will have to practice that more… Thank you again, Otto!

Hi Otto! This is a photo taken in a cafe´in Lodz, Poland. I loved the colours and the people there, but how do I make the best of it? Thank you for taking your time and skills for this!

  • Otto von Münchow

    This is a fun photo, playing with forms, shapes and colours—both natural as part of the room we look into as well as indirectly and as a juxtaposition in the mural on the wall in the back of the room. I think your framing is enhancing the playfulness in the room. You have a frame with in a frame by looking through a opening between two rooms, and not the least you have included a tiny bit of a red box to the right—probably a piece of furniture—and the blue seat to the lower left. It ends up being a composition with primary colours (from a traditional painters palette and not the additive primary colours), respectively yellow, blue and red. In contrast to all these geometric shapes, we have the organic forms of the people sitting in what is obviously a café. In fact, there is a hint of a fourth person around the column to the right. I like the smiling expression of the face of the woman obviously in conversation with this fourth person. It’s a little pity that the woman behind her, all the way towards the rear wall, is in her face, so to speak. Some separation between the faces would have made both of them stand out more clearly. You could have accomplished this by moving to the left, but then you would have left the bit of red furniture to the right out of the frame. The best thing would have been to await the situation, wait until the two faces had moved away from each other (but then of course you might have lost the smiling expression I mentioned before). One more detail: I think I would crop off a little bit of the yellow support in the upper part of the photo. Give it a try, at least this is easy to accomplish. In the end this is another captivating photograph.


9 comments on “Picture Critique

  1. This is a wonderful capture and it was indeed very helpful and most interesting to read Otto’s thoughts about it. ”Wait for the right moment” is a mantra that I could write on my forehead – not only by being too quick, but recently I made a mistake by leaving too early. Twice. Outdoors, the right moment = right light, you have given my input for the right moment indoors now. Thank you! 🙂

  2. Brilliant image …. and I agree with Otto! There should have been a little more of the red chair – listen to me, I don’t have a clue what I’m talking about. Love all the bright clolors. I have to check out my images from the cafe … they haven’t turned out this goo.

  3. Nice of him to give free advice. 🙂 The problem for me (and not your fault) is that it’s difficult/impossible to see the photos next to one another to really compare. Scrolling up and down isn’t the same and when I make them small enough to fit on the page, they lose a lot.


Halva verket är läsarens - så, vad säger Du? As the second half is the reader's - I'd love to have Your line!

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