what should be identified in the photograph. There is no
guideline is to identify everyone or everything that is
identifiable. and pertinent to the action. A pertinent
individual or object is one that is involved in the central
action of the photograph. In other words, anyone or
anything in the photograph that attracts attention should
be identified. Identification should come as early as
people or things at the same time you describe the action.
Memorial Day ceremonies . . . ."
only exception to placing names high in the caption is
in the case of group identification. The recommended
way to handle group photographs and still maintain
reader interest is to use an impersonal identification in
list the names at the end of the caption. This method
all-important first sentence.
most natural and concise manner consistent with clarity.
To ensure consistency, the caption writer generally uses
four methods of identification:
runner; therefore, it is not necessary to say left or right
as a means of identifying the players.
officer and an airman recruit are photographed, it is not
necessary to identify the commanding officer as being
left or right.
are four people shown in a photograph. The
citation to a third class petty officer. These two are
identified by the action. A third person, the petty
officer's wife, standing alongside, is identified by
obvious contrast. The fourth person, the award
recipient's division officer, is then identified by
identification should be used only as a last resort or when
there is a chance of confusion from using any of the other
methods, such as in identifying groups of people. When
you use this method of identification, it is not necessary
Logic tells us that if we start from the left there is no
place to go except to the right. The task is therefore
simplified by saying, "From the left."
explanations needed to clarify the photograph. It is often
impossible for the photograph and the five Ws alone to
provide all the details necessary for a complete
understanding of the photograph. Therefore, it becomes
information for the purpose of clarifying the
photograph is to be used and how it is to be used.
the service. While there is not a set standard for giving
of the caption, as shown in the following example:
amphibious force flagship, USS Eldorado
(AGC-11) gets under way for a Western Pacific
deployment. (Official U. S. Navy Photo by:
PH2 Jack R. Frost, USN.)
Basic Photography Course