How to take a great photograph

Heritage Calling

Ahead of the launch of our photography exhibition Spirit of the North, artist and photographer John Kippin shares his top tips for creating great images (on your camera phone or otherwise).

What makes a good photograph?

black and white image of a building in Rome with arched windows. A car park in the foreground, a man on a bicycle appears to be talking on the phone UNTITLED from ‘Romanitas’ Rome, Italy 2013-16 © John Kippin

For most of us a good photograph is one that is in some way special to us. It might be a picture of people or places that we like to be reminded of, perhaps something that we once were or something that invokes a particular emotional response. A ‘bad photograph’ might show something that we find disagreeable, uninteresting, or worse.

For some people the idea of a ‘good photograph’ is located within the technical and aesthetic requirements of photography. (i.e. that that photographs look like paintings).

The ruined wreck of an aircraft in a field with mountains and greay clouds in the behind HIDDEN. National Park Northumberland © John Kippin

Photography is deceitful by nature. It creates myths and fantasies and distorts…

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