LINESLines are the strongest design element in a picture. Without lines, you can't have shapes, patterns, or textures—they're everywhere! The strongest of those lead your eye through the various elements in photographs.
SHAPE, PATTERN, AND CONTRASTThe shapes of your subject and background elements and how they interact will tell your story. Our brains are programmed to find these things. Among your main challenges as a photographer is to demonstrate a 3D world in a 2D format, and good photographers know the way light (and shadow) interact with these subjects to make a scene come alive.
COLORColor has a huge emotional effect on a photograph. We often use colors to explain our mood. Colors can interact in harmony or they are able to clash, and this can be used in your story. Or, you need to use a black-and-white photograph to force people to focus on the other areas of it.
BEAUTIFUL SUBJECTSEven if you don't know about photography, there are a few things or people which will almost always look great. Once you do have a notion, you possibly can make them look spectacular.
THE MOMENTYou hear about “the moment” a great deal in the photography world, but what does it mean? It's hard to explain. For me personally, which means that you captured a tiny piece of time, which tells a story that that you don't need to explain with words.
A good moment can tell a story that spans a much longer time frame than it took for the shutter to fire. Sometimes, the moment is really good that you will have a good photograph even though your technique wasn't perfect.
All the truly amazing pictures ever taken don't necessarily include many of these, but I'm fairly sure they each include at the least one. Moreover, if you can begin to think about these specific things before and through your photo shoots, I guarantee that you will begin taking better photographs, mainly because you're no further snapping and hoping. You might even start to enjoy seeing more, even when there isn't a camera!
But photography isn't just about being able to see what's in front of you; you have to have the ability to record everything you see using some technology that's more complex than what it took to take Neil Armstrong and his buddies to the moon. This can be very daunting for some people and is the reason why you see so many people with really good cameras keeping their dial on the green auto mode and never moving past that. You do not really want to be that person.