In photography, measuring greatness is not as easy as it seems. Self proclaimed experts tend to rank photos on a scale and assign them ratings in various categories. While such an approach might be decent for a school assignment, it falls short in the real world of subjective aspects. You can’t blatantly declare that one photo is greater than another based off of pure instinct or ratings. There are more subtle details that are nearly impossible to voice an opinion on. Because visual design is largely up to the viewer, not everybody is able to reach a consensus on these ratings. While one analyst might value a mix of different colors, another analyst might despise a mixture of hues. The greatness of an ordinary photograph is up to interpretation, and in this day and age, the sky is the limit when it comes to creativity.
It quickly becomes that a single metric does not fit all. Instead, photographers have been leaning toward a more subjective scheme that takes into account all factors of the photo. Time, location, and exposure are all important during such an analysis. Afterwards, it is crucial that photographers stray away from pure numbers. Commenting on the successes and failures of the piece are critical for improvement and feedback. Finally, words such as “greatness” are appropriate when describing the quality of a photo, as they imply a more holistic approach that does not focus on a single aspect. Between digital and print media, there are many ways to create an effective photograph. This method allows the artist to portray his or her emotions and reflect these through whichever medium is best. At art shows and appraisals, look for more critics to take this approach and make room for a new age of photographic advances.