The shot below is a workmanlike architectural image of a beautiful set of doors. Distracting elements surrounding the doorway have been cropped out, the perspective has been corrected within reason, and the exposure and shadow detail set to tell the whole story as clearly as possible.
But is this the most interesting, and salable, image of this subject matter? Lets start with a decision to avoid the paper sign duct taped to the door. And to try to get a sense of the imposing scale of these doors, sized for a deity, not mere humans. Setting the exposure, color, and white balance to a moodier, less literal options could also add impact. And leaving the image as a part, not the whole, of the doorway creates a sense of mystery. The image below is based on these, and other, decisions. It is far more likely to sell, especially as stock, then the more straightforward image above. C. David Tobie
Layering is a powerful tool to add interest and dimension to images. When shots fall flat, it is useful to scout for interesting foreground elements that can be added to the composition. Foreground images which can be silhouetted can be particularly powerful in framing the shot.
The elegant hotel in this image had been shot in previous sessions, but without producing a sufficiently interesting result, even using the fountain as a foreground element. The old man sitting on the bench offered the perfect opportunity to layer a more interesting and dynamic image. And silhouetting eliminated issues with recognizable faces and image usage restrictions. C. David Tobie