These notes are taken from the chapter entitled Selecting Publicity Photos and Graphics in the text Public Relations Writing and Media Techniques.

The Components of a Good Photo:

  • Technical Quality: Key elements of good contrast and sharp detail are important, so that the photo reproduces well on everything from glossy magazines to cheap newsprint
  • Subject Matter: Subjects can range from a publicity photo, a photo covering a specific news event, portrait or emotional pieces, and static photos promoting a new product or organization
  • Composition: A good, quality photo is simple and uncluttered, clearly illustrating the point of the message
  • Action: Projects movement that is happening right before the reader’s eyes
  • Scale: A quality photo should contain some element of known size so that the viewer can understand how big or small the object is
  • Camera Angle: An interesting camera angle can spark the viewer’s interest

Writing Photo Captions:

  • Caption: Something that all photos sent to the media need, a caption is the brief text under the photo that tells the reader about the picture and its source
  • Photo News Release: Photos with longer captions that are distributed to the media without any accompanying news release