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FORUMS Photography Talk by Genre General Photography Talk 
Thread started 19 Oct 2010 (Tuesday) 18:48
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Titling your work

Senior Member
699 posts
Gallery: 1 photo
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Joined Nov 2006
Location: Southern Oklahoma
Oct 19, 2010 18:48 |  #1

How do others come up with good titles for their work?

I put 7 pictures into a local gallery and titled them very literally (that's just how I am). So how can I come up with better names?


Everyday use: 7D2, 1.4x v3 Canon TC (sometimes the 2x v2 Canon TC), Canon 500mm f4 L IS USM; 6D, 24-105L
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Cream of the Crop
6,725 posts
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Joined Feb 2008
Location: Maryland
Oct 19, 2010 20:57 |  #2

By being more creative!! :)

Seriously though. There are many ways to title a image. Such as what emotion does it evoke? Something about the dominant color. Or having to do with the "time" you are representing. etc...etc...

When it is done just sit back and look at the image... what comes to mind when you look at it as if it was the first time you saw the image. The more you think about it the better at titling you will get. (external link)

Senior Member
589 posts
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Joined Oct 2008
Location: Rapid City, SD
Oct 19, 2010 22:06 |  #3

Something I often do is pick out single detail in the image. . .generally something that's fairly small, but I feel has a particular significance. From there, it's often along the lines of what Mark1 is saying. What does it make me thing of? What does it remind me of? How does it make me feel. I think a title to a photograph often gets overlooked, and I must admit I'm often guilty myself. But you have to ask yourself, "what's special about my photograph?" Why should someone take time out of their busy day to pay attention to what I've created. Just as composition leads the eye into the photograph, a good title can lead the mind. Easier said than done, I know, but also look for inspiration in other things. . .good song and book titles are really the same. Find titles in these that are not what you'd expect, yet catch your attention and draw you in. Then, ask yourself why the author chose this title over something more obvious. Why did Hemmingway focus on the tolling of a bell when on the surface, the book revolved around a man embedding himself with rebels to blow up a bridge? The answer is, it's because he wanted the reader to look closer. Is the theme of a picture of a barn really the barn, or is it about the nostalgia of an old building? Perhaps it's our connection to the earth.

I always say that although I don't judge a book by its cover, I do judge it by the title.

Senior Member
494 posts
Joined Jul 2010
Oct 20, 2010 17:31 as a reply to  @ IslandCrow's post |  #4

i wish i had your problem lol. i think most of us small timers are more concerned with getting into a gallery at all

Cream of the Crop
6,495 posts
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Joined Jun 2009
Location: Cleveland, OH
Oct 20, 2010 17:47 |  #5


Mine just say IMG_1437... IMG_1438... etc... :D

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Cream of the Crop
20,476 posts
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Joined Dec 2002
Location: Southeastern WI, USA
Oct 20, 2010 17:55 |  #6

When I first read the thread title I was sure I read "Tilting your work" and was ready to blast the idea.  :p

I have never put a title on any of my photography.

I haven't intentionally tilted my camera either when there are references to the horizon in the scene. ;)

Skip Douglas
A few cameras and over 50 years behind them .....
..... but still learning all the time.

Oct 23, 2010 02:08 |  #7

Invertalon wrote in post #11134272 (external link)

Mine just say IMG_1437... IMG_1438... etc... :D

my file names for images I like are more identifiable things. As for actually titling the work itself, I go for "Untitled." It's a photograph, and I have a firm belief that it should speak for itself.
I had this discussion with a couple of people before, and someone told me that they feel insulted when photographers title their work literally, as if they couldn't see for themselves. Someone else mentioned that vague titles felt too "artsy" and "hipster".

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Titling your work
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