How to take good pictures

Here’s a tip on how to take good pictures. Photography can be complicated, but this is one tip for point and shoot.

There are lots of people snapping pictures at the Twelve Apostles. Bad pictures. Some of them have fancy DSLR cameras. Others have simple point-and-shoot cameras or are using mobile devices. This is not about gear. It’s about a key aspect of a good work of art. Maybe you’re not set out to create art with your photography. I understand that. I’m an amateur photographer. I take pictures to document and to capture memories. But we all know what it’s like to snap a terrible photograph and, worse, to have a terrible picture taken of us.

At the Twelve Apostles, a few couples asked me to take their photo with the rocks in the background. I happily obliged. Theo and I also asked a few people to take our picture with the rocks in the background. They were are all disappointing. Let me show you why.

The Twelve Apostles.
The Twelve Apostles.
A male and female figure blocking the view of the Twelve Apostles.
Theo and I at the Twelve Apostles. Can you see the rocks? Me neither. Don’t do this.
A male and female figure next to a view of the Twelve Apostles.
Step back or to the side or adjust your angle, and voila! Us and the rocks!

Every single person that took our picture snapped it in a way where the rocks were not visible. In the end, Theo set up his tripod and we got some nice photos of us together. What I’m talking about here is composition. Expert Photography has a great beginner’s guide to composition. Check it out and soon you too will be taking great snapshots of Japanese tourists.



  • We did a quick day tour on the Great Ocean Road in 2004, and hope to go back and do it at a more leisurely pace…it’s so beautiful!

    • Cosette

      Oh, yes, do! And try to do a little planning before you go because the area is not well marked and it’s easy to miss many great lookouts.

  • I think a tripod is often the answer, though I’ve had good luck with strangers photos recently. 🙂 At least people are savvy enough that they don’t (usually) take photos that cut off heads anymore!

    • Cosette

      I don’t see too many thumbs on images any more either. Thank goodness for digital!