Look For The Second Picture And The Third

All of us that choose to work with a camera for our craft, passion, hobby or just plain fun, enjoy the special moment when we “find the shot.” That moment when you think to yourself, and maybe express verbally to those around you at the time, I got it!!! It’s always a great moment and the thing that drives us and makes us want to get better. Sometimes it is a wonderful landscape, a character study portrait, or a fashion shot. No matter the subject we all love knowing we have the shot!

Over the years I have learned that the most successful photographers working will often look to see what else is there and really work the scene to see if there is another picture behind the picture. In other words, find another picture, possibly two more pictures, while you are in the same scenario with the same subject. Don’t stop just because you think you have it. There just might be more and in that second or third version may be a hidden gem.

Here are a couple of examples of completely different pictures that I recently took in a great old castle in Ireland with the fabulous location compliments of our friends at 3XM products in Dublin. This fantastic company brought a group of photographers together to discuss the future of our photography world. As a fun part of the trip they arranged models for us as well as stellar places in which to work.

Here is my first picture of the day taken right after my model walked in the room.

Lit entirely with window light in this gorgeous library, I thought for just a moment that I had it. Then I started to look further and work harder.

Image one. It was colorful, bright, and she looks great and the library made for a strong background.

Image one. It was colorful, bright, and she looks great and the library made for a strong background.

After a few changes in expression I thought I would vary my angles of the face and left her in the same position. Obviously as I change positions, the light quality on the face will change directionally relative to the camera until there is a much more dramatic and maybe even more powerful picture that emerges.


The subtle change in ratio from highlight to shadow on the face indicates and increase in the drama while giving a deeper sense of depth, shape, dimension, and form. In addition, I pulled back on the WB to a slightly cooler tone then desaturated by half while editing in Lightroom.

This kind of thing is always a personal taste but for me, the second picture is the hero shot of the session and had I not left the camera’s original position and moved, I might have missed it.

This last image is our host from 3XM, Mr. Ronan Ryle. Can’t thank him enough for this great opportunity. Take a look at his fabulous range of exquisite products at https://3xmsolution.com/

Mr. Ronan Ryle, Managing Director 3XM Solutions, Dublin.

Mr. Ronan Ryle, Managing Director 3XM Solutions, Dublin.

Go play everyone, and look hard AFTER you find the first picture. You just might find the better picture…