Photography – Outstanding or Standing Out?

Does a photograph have to be outstanding to stand out? I suppose this is a philosophical question and may depend on personal opinion. Rather than focus on the word “outstanding,” would it be wiser to substitute the word interesting or perhaps worthy?

I have taken numerous photos that I think are interesting and worthy, but may not be outstanding. The picture below delivers a smile and offers a penguinesque “Where’s Waldo.” It may also be outstanding, but if not, I would suggest that it is certainly engaging. I wish all my photographs had these qualities.

What are your thoughts?

Where's Waldo Penguin

Via a Tweet – “Tweet – Tag a friend that was born to stand out!
(Olympus Visionary Jay Dickman, OM-D E-M5)”

Shooting in the Streets – Photography

Eric Kim is a street photographer from Berkeley, CA. For those who aren’t familiar with the term “street photography,” it refers to those photographers who use the streets and public byways as their inspiration and motivation to create pictures of the people, places and events happening in the natural and real world. It is like finding the poetry in every day life. This is my simplistic definition, but it will do for now.

Mr. Kim has put together an interesting website about his passion and he shares his philosophy and insights with his readers.

Recently, he posted a series of street photography aphorisms, heuristics, and sayings which he has placed in cyberspace to inspire and motivate others. He has generously offered a downloadable version to his readers at the link below.

The sayings are broken down into categories and by way of example, I am including the categories in bold with one quote from each particular section. Many of them are specific to photography, but quite a few can be brought to bring meaning to a number of life’s avenues.

I hope you enjoy the quotes listed below and that you are motivated to visit Erick Kim’s site. There are many more than those that are noted below. Eric Kim’s photography blog


Street Photography Aphorisms, Heuristics, and Sayings

From the Blog of Eric Kim


Life/Philosophy: It is really complicated to make a photograph simple.

Overcoming your fear of shooting street photography: With physical proximity comes emotional proximity.

Creativity/Inspiration: Having fewer options in photography makes you more creative (think of the benefits of shooting with a prime lens).

Motivation: Going out to shoot is like going to the gym; leaving is always the hardest part. But at the end, you’re always glad that you went.

Aesthetics: “Grain is the brush stroke of photography.”- Constantine Manos

When shooting on the streets: “When in doubt, click.” – Charlie Kirk

Photography books: There is a difference between looking at photo books and reading photo books. One is to just see; the other is to analyze.

Equipment: Don’t judge a photographer on the quality of their camera, but the quality of their images.

Success: To double your success rate in street photography, double your failure rate.

Definitions: Don’t ask if your photo is a “street photograph” or not. Ask if it is a meaningful photograph.

Feedback/critique: It is more useful to ask people what they don’t like about your shots, rather than asking them what they like about your shots.

Editing: Editing tip: When in doubt, ditch.

Fame: Rather than creating photos to please your audience, find an audience that will be pleased by your photos.

Happiness: The only key to happiness and satisfaction as a photographer is to not have your happiness depend on others.

Eric Kim’s photography blog