What Are the Elements of a Photo Essay?

What are the elements of a photo essay?

The goal of a photo essay is to create a cohesive, engaging collection of images that tell a story. This can be done by incorporating recurring themes, moods, styles, people, things, and perspectives that unify a project even though the photos tell different parts of the story.

Photo essays are most often thematic and narrative, but there is also the option of creating a photo series that doesn’t have a specific theme. For example, NBC News recently created an Olympics photo essay that encapsulates the overall gloom of the 2021 Tokyo Games through a series of powerful behind-the-scenes photographs.

Photo essays typically involve a written introduction that contextualizes the images that follow. This can include a title and a concise written statement, as well as text that floats over the images. The text may act as commentary or de facto captions for each photo in the series.

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