Nikon School

Judging Your Own Images

By : Nikon School Blog   |  30 Jun, 2015  |  264

All of us want to shoot great images that make people go 'wow'. Trouble is, how do we know ourselves whether the image is great or not? In a world where millions of images are being shot every year, it is difficult to find a spot at the top. Enter any international contest and you will quickly realise how much great work is being done. To stand out, your image has to be different. Forget about technique or composition rules, if an image captivates your audience, then you've nailed it. But first, you've got to be awed yourself. A few pointers to help you judge your own images.


What is your image about? Is it about a person, or a location, or a thing, or more than one of these, or none of these? Whatever it is, is it grabbing your attention when you look at it along with 300 other files in a folder? If you've got an image which instantly attracts attention due to a strong subject matter, then it has crossed the first step in selection.

Point of view

Irrespective of how common or unique your subject is, have you photographed it any differently from the usual? If your viewpoint is unique or at least less than common, the image moves one more step.

Moment / story

You've got a unique viewpoint of an attractive subject, but do you have a moment that tells a story? The same subject can be shot by thousands, but your story or moment, can be unique and make your image a winner.


Photography is mostly about manipulating light. Is there a magical quality about the light? Have you been able to do justice to the ambient light in setting the exposure? Most contest winners will have brilliant light, natural or artificial, to help the subject. A story with great light is better than one with none.


Do you have too many elements in the image? Is the subject difficult to find? Is every visible element a part of the story with a definite role to play, or are they just accidental inclusions? Unnecessary elements are distractions. Select images with elements that have a definite role to play.


After all the above stages of screening, judge your image technically. Is it free from dust spots, or any other marks? Zoom to 100% to be sure. Is it too grainy? Does it have even a very slight camera shake? Is the depth-of-field as per requirement? Is it free from any pronounced lens distortions or flares? Is the saturation or sharpness within moderate levels?

While some of these technical defects can be corrected, it's better to avoid them in the first place while shooting, or select the files which exhibit the least of these defects.

The final test for your image is to ensure that you have captured the truth. The story that you have captured should indeed be a story, and not one staged by you. Be strict on yourself and don't give in to the temptation of putting elements in the frame as per your convenience. The best rewards are the ones hard won.

Comments (115)


Mr. Jishukrishna Sahu


Mr. Amitava Paira


Mr. Amitava Paira


Mr. Ranjith V S

Always a Nikon fan

Mr. Ranjith V S


Mr. Ranjith V S

Great article

Mr. Ranjith V S

Wonderful images!

Mr. Ranjith V S

Great article! Thanks!


Very Helpful, Informative and Educational!!



Mr. Debashis Jana

Nifty ideas

Ms. Abhisikta Banerjee

It was of great help.

Mr. manoj kaswan


Mr. manoj kaswan

in every

Mr. manoj kaswan


Mr. manoj kaswan

good looking

Mr. manoj kaswan

every one wants to his face effective

Mr. manoj kaswan

helpful blog

Mr. manoj kaswan


Mr. manoj kaswan


Mr. manoj kaswan

blog is great

Mr. manoj kaswan

judgment with own image is deep impact

Mr. Debashis Jana

Nice photographs

Mr. Vivekananda Pradhan

Awesome captures

Mr. Amit Mishra

* detailed

Mr. Amit Mishra

such a detaialed analysis.

Mr. Abhinava Pandey

helpful to all

Mr. Abhinava Pandey

good analysis

Mr. Simon Binay Purty


Mr. Simon Binay Purty

very useful

Mr. Simon Binay Purty

very useful

Mr. Simon Binay Purty

great tips

Mr. Simon Binay Purty

helpful information


dealing with light is not easy......

Mr. Soham Banerjee

very very helpful blog

Ms. Shinam Afroz

Brushing up my skills with these important skills to be obtained Awesome

found it really interesting and useful.

Mr. Manish Vig

Amazingly crisp explanation. thanks.

Mr. Surajit Das


Mr. Simon Binay Purty

amazing.... really helpful to brush up my skills...

Mr. S Chandra

Very helpful blog.




Mr. Vignesh Rashinkar

useful info.

Mr. Dharmik Vyas

super useful piece of information.

Mr. Souvik Pramanik

Boost up

Mr. Himu Sonowal


Mr. Harsh Saw

It is fucking good

Mr. Harsh Saw

Awesome main points... Covered..

Mr. Harsh Saw


Mr. Hemant Gera

very nice article

Mr. Athish Sanjay Itagi

Good Article

Mr. Athish Sanjay Itagi

Good Article

Mr. Athish Sanjay Itagi

Good Article

Mr. Athish Sanjay Itagi

Good Article

Mr. Ashutosh Pal

very helpful

Mr. Sri Govind Miraskar


Mr. Ishaan Kapoor


Mr. mukesh sharma

very helpfull to create true photos

Mr. Deepak Kumar

very awesome ideas ????????

Mr. Julin Alex

Veery interesting :)

Mr. Aravinth Ananthan

Interesting and very useful.

Mr. Madan Kumar


Mr. ParthaSurajit Bhuyan

Nice to read...

Mr. Vivekananda Pradhan

Pretty good idea

Mr. Nachiket Shukla

Usefull! THANKS ...

Mr. Abhishek Golatkar

good read

Ms. Shruthi V

Very useful information

Mr. Dhananjay Sen

awesome pics n good ideas

Mr. Bhaskar Nath

thanks for this tip

Mr. Ashutosh Raghuwanshi

I already use many of these steps but learnt a few more from this article and more importantly the order in which I should be filtering my images. Thanks!

Mr. Suraj Shetty

good read!

Mr. Vishal Sanwal

Awesome creative work it helps me to click right

Mr. Avik Dutta

thanks for those tips

Mr. Parag Jadhav

Best for beginners.

Mr. Parag Jadhav

Very useful information.

Mr. Rajarshi Sengupta


Mr. Aryan Kathuria

Wonderful tips

Mr. Pratul Pal

So nice clicks

Mr. Pratul Pal

So nice clicks

Mr. Pratul Pal

Thanks for the article

Ms. deepika kumari gupta

Useful article thank u...

Mr. Pratul Pal

Very useful...

Mr. Sunil Khedulkar

V.nice & Help full

Mr. Prabir Chakraborty

good to understand a capture....

Mr. Anurag Tomar


Mr. Sandeep Kumar

Great images to demonstrate the article.

Mr. Sandeep Kumar

Just capture the moment.

Mr. Danda Srinivasa Rao

ye.. best way to improve photographs.

Mr. Mukul Mathur

Yeah Nice !!!

Mr. Rupendra singh chouhan

Thinking Beyond the Border

Mr. Mukul Mathur

I will keep these tips in my mind.

Mr. Mukul Mathur

Thank you very much

Mr. bharath kumar

very useful tips to improve ourselves in photography

Mr. Arup Ghosh

This is the best way to improve photographs.


Useful tips

Mr. Brajveer singh


Mr. Mohan Vaze

Thanks for the interesting write-up and very valuable guidance. After all Photography is a wonderful blend of art and science. Best regards

Mr. Abhijeet Bodas

In case of proper exposure, you can use the exposure meter in graphical representation provided on your DSLR screen and even the aperture size on screen graphically When the aperture is fully open Depth of field is small ie the focus point is highlighted more and clear while rest of the part is ingored gradually while aperture with smallest size give more depth of field

Mr. somanath sahu

This article inspire me for dadicate in photography

Mr. Tomal Bhattacharjee

Does Nikon has a platform where we can let our images be judged of how good or bad they are.

Mr. Vasudev Singh

The article has made me to test my images, very helpful.


Nice article & make u think b4 taking zig zag pic with two beautiful eyes & a nice camera.

Mr. Neelakantan V

very helpful


really very helpful article

Mr. dhairya shrishkar

Very helpful!!

Mr. Prashant Asthana


Mr. Rajvardhan Singh

Very helpful..

Mr. dl vunga


Mr. Milind Sorkhade

After reading this article i found problems i hv to overcome...

Mr. Sarajit Sil

A very helpful article indeed!!!

Mr. Sarajit Sil

A very helpful article indeed!!!

Mr. Manish Pundir

The point which appealed to me most is about maintaining the truth about the story you have captured

Mr. Prem Singh

really helped a lot

Mr. Prem Singh

really helped a lot