Seeing Red is a Good Thing

March 4, 2010

Photo Tips

This is a short and sweet post – inspired by a video that was posted on my pal’s Frederick Van Johnson’s site.

Compare the above picture with the one below.

The top picture is more attention getting (not necessarily better) because the girl is wearing red.

In 1978, I read a National Geographic photo tips book. One of the tips: Have the subject wear red. Good tip.

Check out the image below. It’s the cover image of David Alan Harvey’s wonderful book, Cuban Soul. My feeling is that the photograph would not have had such an impact without the red towel. (More on that photo: I love the light in the eyes and shallow depth of field.)

Below is a  screen grab from Frederick Van Johnson’s video that reminded me of this “seeing red” tip. Who stands out in the crowd? I wonder if Fv read the same book :-)

Explore the Light,


P.S. Towels are popular in Cuba. Here is a shot I took while on the island.

This post was written by:

- who has written 171 posts on The Digital Photo Experience.

Canon Explorer of Light Rick Sammon has published 36 books, including Exploring the Light and Digital Photography Secrets.

When asked about his photo specialty, Rick says, “My specialty is not specializing.”

You can follow Rick on twitter at and visit his website at

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One Response to “Seeing Red is a Good Thing”

  1. David McCormick Says:

    I remember reading a long time ago that the signature picture from National Geographic–especially in the early years of color photography–was someone wearing a red bandana. That must be why.


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